Comparison Review: Bajaj Dominar vs Mahindra Mojo

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Highlights

  • The Bajaj Dominar is feature packed and makes more power as well
  • The Mahindra Mojo benefits from a bigger fuel tank and a refined engine
  • The value for money quotient on the Dominar is hard to beat

Photography: Pawan Dagia

When Bajaj Auto introduced the Dominar in December last year, the common notion was that the company made the ultimate motorcycle for its price. It has the looks, the goods and a highly affordable price tag. The first impressions were of a game changer. The Dominar then, definitely looks like a highly desirable power cruiser. However, that’s just one end of the story. The Mahindra Mojo has been around for a year and a half now and has developed a niche for itself in recent times. You either love it or you hate, but ignoring is out of the question. Also when you compare it to the Dominar, you will see several striking similarities. Both bikes are truly Indian, are flagship offerings for their respective manufacturers and are to be ridden for longer rides. So, which one does the job better? We took our single-cylinder contenders out for a ride to find out.

 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Bajaj Dominar dominates in styling

Bajaj Dominar 400

1.51 Lakh * On Road Price (New Delhi)
Bajaj Dominar 400
Which One Looks Better?
 
Our contenders are as different as chalk and cheese in the looks department. Both the Bajaj Dominar and Mahindra Mojo are naked motorcycles, but with completely different design elements. I really like how Bajaj has designed the Dominar. It is well proportioned, has the right lines and definitely looks more modern of the two. The fact that there are influences of a certain Italian power cruiser also helps matters further and the Dominar truly dominates in terms of design. The styling is on point and the all-LED headlamp play a significant role in ensuring you are the subject of display. The fuel tank is bulbous and includes several elements, but does not look overdone. The Dominar marks a great sense of maturity in design for the bike maker and is certain to have a larger liking in comparison to that of the Mojo. We’ve said it before and we say it again; the Dominar is the best-looking Bajaj yet and definitely grabs the right kind of attention.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Mahindra Mojo looks quirky and will grown on you

On the other hand, the Mahindra Mojo is a quirky looking thing. Its design may get polarizing views and that, in my opinion isn’t a bad thing. You will either love the Mojo or go the other way round. But in either case, it still remains a very noticeable motorcycle. The owl themed twin headlamps have turned out to be its trademark design characteristic and so have the twin silencers. The eyebrow themed LED DRLs just above the twin headlamps looks fantastic and give a unique look to the bike. The Mojo also looks like the bulkier motorcycle between the two, despite both bikes weighing the same. Having said that, Mahindra could’ve done a better job with the design, especially the rear three-quarter that looks a little odd.
 
Speaking of fit and finish, both Bajaj and Mahindra offer impeccable quality levels of the bike. The Mojo has been around for a while now and despite the age, the bike feels well put together and sturdy. You don’t find any parts rattling or falling off even after having ridden the motorcycle through some deploring roads. Yes, there are certain components that could see improvement, but on the whole, the Mojo feels built to last. On the Dominar, the clean finish is only added by the impressive fitting of parts. Mind you, there are more panels on the Bajaj bike, but all have been placed together with much appreciation. No panel gaps or rattling plastic here too and the bike feels every bit premium as you would expect.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Mojo's console may not look great but packs in lots of information

Instrumentation and Ergonomics
 
The Bajaj Dominar features a dual instrument cluster with a digital screen and an auxiliary indicator on the fuel tank. In comparison, the Mahindra Mojo gets a single analog-digital unit. The latter's is the more feature rich unit between the two motorcycles. The Mojo’s console may not be the best looking one here but packs in more information including a top speed recorder, lap timer amidst the usual twin trip meters and odometer and speedometer.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The motor restricts you to 9500 rpm, so the 13,000 rpm tacho feels redundant

The Dominar’s console certainly looks more fancy, but is least equipped one as far as information is concerned. The digital unit packs in the basics, while the rev counter goes up till 13,000 rpm, which is pretty redundant, considering the motor won’t let you move much past the 9500 rpm mark. The auxiliary LED strip on the fuel tank incorporates all the warning lights including the Bajaj logo, ABS indicator, engine temperature sign and much more. However, the second console is hard to read on the fly and you have to bend and change your field of vision, which can be distracting. You also find a hard time reading the Dominar’s console in direct sunlight, which isn’t the case with the Mojo’s unit.
 
We would have liked more information from the Dominar and the current one just seems underwhelming. Either bike do not get a gear indicator, which is missed as well. Switchgear quality on both motorcycles is up to the mark and comes with backlighting.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The soft cushioning restricts your hours on the saddle of the Mojo

Riding ergonomics on both nakeds are pretty much identical. The Dominar and Mojo come with wide handlebars, while the foot pegs are largely centre set allowing for an upright position. The foot pegs on the Dominar though are a tad bit rear inclined. Coming to seating comfort, the Mojo’s cushioning is a bit too soft for a tourer, while there is negligible thigh support as well. This does restrict the number of hours you spend on the saddle and warrants for frequent breaks.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The seats more comfortable on the Dominar

On the Bajaj Dominar too, the seat cushioning isn’t the best, but the seat is a lot wider for both the rider and pillion. You have ample room to make adjustments and the neatly contoured seats provide thigh support as well. That said, if you aren’t vertically gifted, the Dominar with its 800 mm seat height makes for a more appealing proposition as compared to the Mojo’s 814 mm seat height.

Dimensions Bajaj Dominar 400 Mahindra Mojo
Length 2156 mm 2100 mm
Width 813 mm 800 mm
Height 1112 mm 1165 mm
Wheelbase 1453 mm 1465 mm
Ground Clearance 157 mm 174 mm
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Dominar makes more power, the Mojo gets a better engine

Engine and Performance
 
On paper, the Bajaj Dominar feels like the outright winner. It has the bigger engine, more power and better performance figures to boast off when pitted against the Mahindra Mojo. However, ride both bikes back to back and there is a sizeable difference. The Dominar shares its engine with the KTM 390 Duke, but has been tuned for different kind of performance. It has also been watered down, if you can call it that, to be easier to live with on a day-to-day basis. So you get the same 373 cc single-cylinder engine that now gets a single overhead camshaft with four valves and Bajaj Auto’s triple-spark technology. The motor makes fairly less power than the KTMs churning out 34.5 bhp at 8000 rpm and 35 Nm of torque at 6500 rpm. But that’s a whole lot more power than the Mojo’s 295 cc single-cylinder engine makes, belting out 26.5 bhp at 8000 rpm and 30 Nm at 5500 rpm.

Specifications Bajaj Dominar 400 Mahindra Mojo
Engine 373 cc DTS-i 295 cc
Power 34.5 bhp @ 8000rpm 27 bhp @ 8000rpm
Torque 35 Nm @ 8500rpm 30 Nm @ 5500rpm
Transmission 6-speed with Slipper Clutch 6-speed
Kerb Weight 182 kg 182 kg
 
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Dominar gets an enthusiastic engine and sounds good too

Compared to the older KTM’s engine, the Dominar’s block feels more composed. The engine sounds pleasing with deeper bass and there is a certain level of refinement that you will like. Power delivery is linear, but you need to work up the gears at lower revs to gain momentum. There is a strong surge post 4000 rpm and the real sweet spot is really between 6500 to 8000 rpm, post which the engine offers limited feedback and that's disappointing. However, the bigger issue with the Dominar is not the power but the vibrations that you carry throughout the rev range. There is a constant buzz around the footpegs and the seat, which hampers the overall riding experience. That said, the Dominar is the faster motorcycle here and you can hit speeds of 150 kmph with ease. The problem is with sustaining those speeds. The vibes won’t allow you to and the most optimum cruising speed remains around the 110-120 kmph. In all honesty, those are the kind of speeds what most of us will be doing on longer rides.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Mojo can cruise at triple digit speeds without breaking a sweat

When it comes to ride-ability, the Mahindra Mojo has the better engine overall. It is extremely refined and will cruise at triple digit speeds for all day long without breaking a sweat. We’ve always liked the Mojo and that comes from a certain calmness of the engine. The Mahindra too needs to be worked up in initial gears, but the strong mid-range makes for a surge in power post 5000 rpm and will let you push the bike at just about 9000 rpm. A 6-speed transmission does duty on both bikes and works well. Cog shifts are precise, but the Dominar gets a brownie point for including a slipper clutch. While it may not be a life changing feature, the slipper clutch definitely helps in more controlled downshifts between the two.
 
Between the two nakeds, the Mojo is also the better sounding of the two and that’s a benefit from the extra silencer. Both heavy weights will cruise well on straight roads and stand firm on tarmac, which most tourers will appreciate. Wind blast deflection isn't the best on either models, and you will need a larger visor to combat the same.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Mojo offers a better touring range with a 21 litre fuel tank

Which One is More Fuel Efficient?
 
The Mahindra Mojo benefits from a whopping 21-litre fuel tank that allows for a range of around 400 km in a single fill. That certainly adds to the Mojo’s credentials and also the fact that healthy riding will get you around 30-35 kmpl. On the other hand, the Bajaj Dominar not only gets a bigger engine, and is also the more enthusiastic of the two. However, given the power cruiser status, the 13.5-litre fuel tank size feels underwhelming. It will also make for more frequent fuel stops with a range of around 250 km, while the overall efficiency you can expect is around 25-30 kmpl.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The perimeter frame on the Dominar makes it comfortable around corners

Handling and Braking
 
The Bajaj Dominar benefits from the perimeter frame shared with the Pulsar RS and NS 200. Now, it may not be as sophisticated as the Trellis unit on the KTMs, but the perimeter frame does a good job in handling the bigger engine and additional power. Despite weighing the same as the Mojo at 182 kg, the Dominar feels lighter and is also friendlier around corners. The balanced chassis knows a thing or two on how to deal with sweeping turns and impresses with its dynamics. The Mojo uses a double-cradle frame and that shows its age once you plan to dive into a corner. As stable the Mojo is on open highways, give it a winding road and it’s immediately out of its comfort zone. In city limits too, the Mahindra Mojo feels harder to maneuver compared to the Bajaj Dominar, and the former’s weight really makes itself apparent here. The Dominar feels built for the city and highways and that makes it the easier bike to live with.

bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

Both bikes offer excellent straightline stability

The Bajaj Dominar gets a balanced suspension with telescopic forks up front and a Nitrox monoshock setup at the rear. The ride quality is firm, not as much as the KTMs; but supple enough to take up most of undulations. However, a rough road or a nasty pothole will throw you off the saddle. The Mahindra Mojo gets the more fancier setup here with upside-down forks (USD) up front and a monoshock suspension at the rear. The fatter forks just allow you to glide over some of the nastiest bit of roads that our country can sometimes offer. The ride quality is definitely better on the Mojo, but is let down by the underwhelming cushioning on the seat.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Bajaj Dominar benefits from ABS

Both the tourers get identical brakes on paper. The Dominar uses a ByBre sourced 320 mm front disc and 230 mm rear disc that works well for the bike. It stops in time and the brake pedal offers just the right bite, if not the best. The MRF RevZ tyres also do a fantastic job in offering the right amount of traction from the wheels and offer excellent feedback at all times. However, what really makes the Dominar most dependable is the inclusion of dual-channel Anti-Lock Brakes. The ABS unit kicks when needed and isn’t intrusive. It is also something you have to opt for, especially if you are making the transition to a big bike.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

The Mojo's brakes lack the sharp bite, but are progressive

Meanwhile, the Mahindra Mojo uses brakes from J.Juan, an Italian firm that makes brakes for Mahindra Racing. The bike gets a 320 mm disc up front, same as the Dominar and offers decent feedback. The front brake lacks initial bite and while there is progression after sometime, it takes time getting used to. The rear uses a 240 mm disc on the Mojo that isn’t the most responsive. Tap the brake pedal hard and it will lock up the rear wheel. The Mojo also misses out on ABS, which is extremely disappointing for the bike of its size. Nevertheless, the Mojo gets Pirellis providing contact between the bike and tarmac and the tyres do a phenomenal job. It is also the more expensive one compared to the MRFs, but the sticky rubber is addictive.
 
bajaj dominar vs mahindra mojo comparison review

It is hard to ignore the Dominar's extensive feature list for the price tag

Verdict

As much as we thought the Bajaj Dominar would be hard to compete with, this comparison has turned out to be a revelation. The Mahindra Mojo comes capably close to the Dominar and is even better than the former in several ways. It only goes on to show that Mahindra definitely knows a thing or two about building bikes and that five year hardwork did pay off well, with a few niggles of course. However, when you consider the complete package, the Dominar is definitely hard to beat. Sure, it may not be as supple to ride as the Mojo, but the extensive feature list is hard to ignore. Then, there is the biggest factor differentiating both and that is pricing. The ABS equipped Dominar is attainable at ₹ 1.50 lakh, which makes it a good ₹ 19,000 cheaper than the Mojo. And difference only increases, if you factor in the non-ABS variant that is priced at ₹ 1.36 lakh (all-prices, ex-showroom Delhi). While both bikes have their respective shortfalls, the Dominar manages to take a stronger stand and a more value for money offering. Then, there is Bajaj Auto's far better sales and service network compared to that of Mahindra 2Wheelers, and that will certainly get more takers for the Dominar. However, if you are looking at a sturdy and very focused touring machine, the Mojo still makes a compelling case, even if not worth the extra money.

Price (Ex-Showroom, Delhi) Bajaj Dominar 400 Mahindra Mojo
Non-ABS ₹ 1,36,000 ₹ 1,69,871
ABS ₹ 1,50,000 -

 

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