• Mar 5th 2010 at 8:57AM
  • 6
Lexus CT 200h – Click above for high-res image gallery

Lexus debuted the production version of its compact CT 200h hybrid at the Geneva Motor Show this week and, after the show, it will be heading west for its U.S. debut. At its unveiling, Lexus officials referred to a global launch for the new car a year from now without committing to specific markets. Lexus has now confirmed that the CT 200h will be added to the U.S. lineup and will also appear at the New York Auto Show next month.

Like the Toyota Prius, the CT 200h uses a 1.8-liter inline-four with the hybrid system and features the same electric only, normal and eco driving modes. The CT will likely approach if not match the Prius' 50 miles per gallon EPA mileage number. This will be the fifth hybrid model in the U.S. Lexus lineup, along with the HS, GS, LS, and RX.




[Source: Lexus]

PRESS RELEASE

All-New Lexus CT 200h Premium Compact Hybrid Makes North American Debut at 2010 New York International Auto Show
2010 Geneva Motor Show - Lexus CT 200h 008
• Only Dedicated Hybrid Vehicle in the Premium Compact Segment
• 1.8L Four-Cylinder Engine Paired with Lexus Hybrid Drive
• Engineered for Dynamic Handling and Agility

NEW YORK – March 3, 2010 – The all-new Lexus CT 200h premium compact hybrid will be on display for the first time in North America at the 2010 New York International Auto Show March 31 through April 11. The sporty and versatile five-door, which had its global premiere at the 2010 Geneva Auto Show today, will be Lexus' second dedicated hybrid and fifth hybrid vehicle in the line-up in the U.S.

"When the all-new Lexus CT 200h enters the market it will be the only hybrid vehicle in the emerging premium compact segment," said Mark Templin, Lexus Division group vice president and general manager.

"The CT 200h combines luxury features, eye-catching styling, and driving excitement that we know will attract a whole new buyer to the Lexus brand."

The Lexus CT 200h evolved from the LF-Ch concept unveiled at the 2009 Frankfurt Motor Show and was styled with optimum aerodynamic efficiency. Its size, packaging and hybrid technology meet the requirements of the discerning, environmentally-conscientious consumer in the emerging premium compact market. It offers no compromise on the quality, refinement and driving pleasure which hallmark the progressive luxury inherent in every Lexus.

Lexus has offered consumers hybrid powertrain technology since 2005. Marking the introduction of Lexus Hybrid Drive technology to the premium compact segment for the first time, the all-new CT 200h not only reinforces the company's clear leadership in hybrid technology, but also the unrivalled breadth of Lexus models available as a hybrid.

The CT 200h features a 1.8-liter gas engine with Variable Valve Timing with intelligence (VVT-i), a high performance battery, power control unit, transmission with an electric motor generator, a power split device to re-allocate power from the engine and electric motor generator according to operational requirements.

Four drive modes enhance the capabilities of the CT 200h's Lexus Hybrid Drive technology and change the rate of throttle opening for a given throttle-pedal angle. EV mode allows for ultra-quiet running on electric motor power alone. Normal mode has an essentially linear throttle response while Eco mode reduces throttle response relative to the pedal angle and adjusts air conditioning settings to emphasize fuel economy.

The new CT 200h has been specifically developed to combine superior handling agility and a sporty driving experience with the ride comfort expected of any Lexus. The Sport mode provides a more responsive throttle and modifies the Electronic Power Steering (EPS) settings to give a faster response to driver inputs.

In the interest of maximum fuel efficiency, particular attention has been paid to the aerodynamic efficiency of every aspect of the CT 200h's design. The front and rear corners have been pulled in tight to improve the flow of air down the sides of the vehicle and minimize wind turbulence within the wheel arches. The sides of the cabin have been tapered, the rear edge of the roof lowered and even the lower body painstakingly detailed to optimize airflow. Completing the look are unique 17-inch alloy wheels and blue badging specific to Lexus hybrid vehicles.

The interior offers unprecedented levels of refinement in this segment. Efficient and elegant, the cabin combines superior ergonomics with hand-crafted, premium quality materials to create an outstanding driving environment. The extensive use of metallic finishes and dark, soft touch materials reinforces the luxury experience.

Despite the compact package, the CT 200h does not compromise interior roominess. Its long, 102-inch wheelbase offers front and rear seat passenger accommodation that is amongst the most spacious in the segment

"Lexus has been at the forefront of luxury hybrid technology for the last five years. The CT 200h is just another example of our commitment to developing cars that are innovative and different from what's already out there," said Templin. "With its exceptional fuel economy, ultra-low emissions, dynamic handling, and beautiful styling, the CT 200h is a car that doesn't sacrifice excitement for efficiency."


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 6 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      My guess is while they're use the Prius ICE, they'll up the power of the electric drive... maybe even LiOn batteries? Also, maybe in part because of the size differential, this car could be lighter than the Prius? I don't know how they're reconcile the luxury refinements and need for more batteries with the weight issue.

      I like this car a lot, and if the mileage is comprable to my 2010 Prius, I could see making the switch if this comes out before I ever get the Fisker Karma I ordered. The thing about this car is if it gets Prius mileage, I can see this canabalizing Prius sales, unlike the HS 250h which has disappointing (to me) mpgs.
      • 5 Years Ago
      As a Prius owner, this is what I wanted when rumblings of a Lexus hybrid first came out... a Lexus version of essentially the same thing. The Prius has outstanding packaging. People are continually amazed at how big it is on the inside, and how much stuff you can load in it through the hatchback. The HS250h was a disappointment not only in fuel economy but also in having a smallish trunk with no folding rear seat. So this may cannibalize at least one Prius purchase (my trade-in for a loaded new Prius in a year or two) for this model. But that's no shame- that's what they call up-sell in the retail world!

      As for acceleration, there is excess motor capacity in the Prius relative to what the battery can provide. So an uprated battery could definitely improve acceleration. There would be some weight penalty, but that would be at least partially offset by the larger battery also being able to accept more regenerative braking energy. The current battery is somewhat limited in its ability to accept charge as fast as energy can be produced through regen.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Erm, i didn't see that coming.
      I wonder if they're going to add a bit of power. Prius acceleration is not exactly up to luxury car standards anyway.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The Euro numbers show it being essentially the same MPG as Prius.

      So here it is, the hybrid that gets great gas mileage and doesn't look like a hybrid and has a dose of luxury.

      I think it will do quite well.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The first Lexus (or Toyota for that matter) I would spend my own money on, the LFA excluded.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I will add assuming it drives well. The Prius is about as exciting as white bread. Hopefully this car actually likes to go around corners.