Green Car Review - Lexus CT200h
PUBLISHED: 15:31 15 November 2012 | UPDATED: 22:22 20 February 2013
Our green car writer John Simpson looks at the Lexus hybrid
You might have been shushed at by Kylie from behind the wheel of a CT200h during the ad-breaks but is joining the quiet revolution worth the 23,000 signing-up fee?
The CT200h combines a 1.8-litre petrol engine with an electric motor to provide a purely electric mode as and when it can. This electric mode cuts out carbon emissions entirely and bypasses the fuel tank in favour of a nickel-metal battery which can return up to 1.2 miles of near-silent electric motoring, up to 25mph.
1.2 miles? Thats rubbish! you say. Calm yourself, the battery swiftly replenishes itself via kinetic energy generated by the wheels much like other hybrid systems and youre back to petrol-free zero-emission motoring before you know it. As is the norm with hybrids, city drivers are the most likely to benefit.
The luxury hatchback certainly stands out on the road with its sleek sporty curves and ten distinctive colours on offer but with a 0-62mph time of 10.3 seconds and top speed of 113mph, that nippy first impression is unrepresentative of the CTs actual performance.
Drivers can choose between an EV or sport mode, the former of which will draw energy from the battery rather than the fuel tank to ensure optimum electric motoring. Flicking over to sport mode remaps the engine to boost acceleration and at its peak, the CT200h can produce 134bhp.
The younger audience Lexus is aiming at could be hungry for something perkier but the environmentalists should be satisfied; the CT boasts class-leading CO2 emissions at just 94g/km, securing completely free road tax.
Owners bank balances will be grateful of the CTs fuel consumption too, clocking in at 68.9mpg combined.
The interior cant be faulted. Luxury and solid build quality runs throughout the spacious and practical cabin from the mouse-operated sat-nav infotainment system to the leather steering wheel and seats. Boot space isnt bad either despite housing the nickel-metal battery.
FACTS AND FIGURES
Cost: 23,786 - 30,986
Range: 1.2 miles in electric mode, 682 miles with full fuel tank
CO2: 94g/km 68.9 combined mpg
Why is it unique?: It is the worlds first full hybrid premium compact hatchback
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