Official details and pictures of Lexus's BMW 1-series and Audi A3 rival
3 March 2010

Lexus’s new CT200h will rival the Audi A3 and BMW 1-series in Europe’s lucrative luxury hatchback market when it arrives in UK showrooms early next year, priced from around £21,000. The firm is expecting the car to shift around 30,000 units per year to double Lexus's business in Europe.

The five-door CT200h, unveiled at this week’s Geneva motor show, uses the Toyota Prius’s 1.8-litre petrol-electric hybrid powertrain and CVT gearbox, although the car has been built on an all-new front-drive platform (a first for a European Lexus) to offer a sportier drive than the Prius.

See exclusive Lexus CT200h pics

Lexus hasn’t revealed performance figures for the CT200h, but it is expected to produce considerably more than the 98bhp and 105lb ft in the Prius. As in the Prius, three distinct driving modes are offered (Eco, Normal and Sport) although these have all been retuned in the CT200h to make it a bespoke Lexus car.

In Dynamic mode, the MacPherson strut front and double wishbone rear suspension firm up and steering and throttle responses are sharpened to boost the CT200h’s agility and road holding. The CT200h’s electric motor and nickel hydride battery pack help propel the car up to 1.24 miles on electric power alone, helping the CT200h reach its target of offering class-leading CO2 emissions of less than 99g/km.

The CT200h is 4320mm long, 1765mm and 1430mm high, meaning it is longer, wider and taller than the A3 and 1-series. Its 2600mm wheelbase is only eclipsed by the 1-series’ 2660mm and its 345-litre boot is bettered only by the A3’s 350-litre capacity.

Styling has been scaled back from the more radical looks of the LF-Ch concept from last year’s Frankfurt show, mirroring that of larger Lexus models. Most of the CT200’s sales are likely to come from those seeking a hybrid powertrain in a premium hatchback, something none of Lexus’s rivals currently offer. It will remain as a hybrid-only model, too.

Although not confirmed, a small SUV and three-door CT200h are set to be spun off this platform.

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Comments
36

26 February 2010

[quote Autocar]Lexus’s new CT200h will rival the Audi A3 and BMW 1-series in Europe’s lucrative luxury hatchback market when it arrives in UK showrooms early next year[/quote]

No s**t, Sherlock!

Me, I think it's a hateful, horrible, vile, hideous, diseased abortion of a car and I hope it goes away and dies quietly, very soon. I'd have a 1-series instead - a car which, contrary to popular opinion, is actually really, really pretty. It certainly looks much smaller outside than a Golf, which it isn't. Unfortunately, it feels smaller inside, not just to drive but in terms of interior room. That's where this boring-as-f*** Lexus comes into its own, because it's FWD (yawn). Pity, Lexus was the one remaining brand other than BMW to remain (in Europe, at least) FWD-free.

26 February 2010

[quote Rover P6 3500S]That's where this boring-as-f*** Lexus comes into its own, because it's FWD (yawn). Pity, Lexus was the one remaining brand other than BMW to remain (in Europe, at least) FWD-free.[/quote] FWD doesn't mean a boring drive though. But I agree on it's looks though. It just looks... I dunno... ugly in the back? Is that harsh?

26 February 2010

Major fail, as I believe they say. This thing's a dog. Nobody's going to choose it over a one series. I wouldn't choose it over one of those Korean hatchbacks. What on earth possessed Toyota to sign off such a styling disaster?

26 February 2010

Yet another car that is destined to be a sales failure here, no doubt it will do well n america but i guess that says a lot for their taste.

26 February 2010

This one will be a grower and will probably look better in dark colours, rather than chav white.

As far as quoting that it has nickel hydride batteries, AUTOCAR make your mind up, only a few days ago you quoted it was the first Lexus to have Lithium Ion batteries.

The real point everybody is missing here is that this is a premium sports hatch that will emit less than 99g/km co2. To company car drivers that means a lot of car for the lowest possible tax liability. It will also be exempt from London Congestion charge, and in cities that will create emission free zones effectively banning cars other than EV's, the Lexus will have it's EV mode which will make it allowed.

So styling or not, this car makes a lot of sense for our current times.

26 February 2010

Whilst there is always a chance it will look better in the metal my views echo the general view it was 'styled' by the tea lady on an off day. I can see middle class yoghurt knitters buying it but cannot see it replacing too many A3's/ 1 series etc in the company junior exec car fleet unless the accountants enforce it upon their staff. Why does going 'green' mean bypassing the design studios? Does the development of all that techno gizmo stuff leave the design budget with a hole in it?

26 February 2010

"The CT200h’s electric motor and nickel hydride battery pack help propel the car up to 1.24 miles on electric power alone"

my daily commute is 0.62 miles away so on good weather days with no traffic and everything working perfectly i might get nearly make it all on electric...or i might walk.

26 February 2010

Who cares what the back looks like?! Overall, it is pleasing enough to look at - though it doesn't say Lexus to me...more Toyota. But I can see Alfa Romeo, Seat Leon, Impreza hatchback and a bit of Golf in there at various angles. I suppose the low emissions are the big attraction. I would consider it, given Lexus-brand credentials. Not sure about that gear lever though...

26 February 2010

Rostpher - sorry to dissapoint you but the CT200 is not likely to be sold in the North American market

Usual Lexus bashers on here - they do need to get a life!

Lets see what the car looks like in the flesh and then we will be able to comment with more accuracy - I also never see any comments re other manufacturers developing Hybrid - seems to be OK for them!

26 February 2010

What a dull lookin car, as others have said it looks like an expensive Toyota. The area where the door meets the rear 3/4 is a disaster. I quite like the look of the interior though.

Sure it'll sell well in Norwich but I can't see it taking many sales from the A3/1 series.

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