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7 / 10

Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review

Model tested: Lexus CT 200h F Sport: $49,900

When the Lexus CT 200h was launched in Australia at the end of March, it was priced almost identically to its under-the-skin twin, the Toyota Prius. A Lexus for the price of a Toyota? Sign me up.

But when Toyota Australia slashed Prius pricing by as much as $7500 just two weeks later, the definition of the baby Lexus changed. What was once a Prius with a sexy hatchback body is now a premium car with Toyota underpinnings. The value equation has undeniably changed, but what hasn’t changed is that the CT 200h will still make many people in the market for a frugal, premium small car very happy.

When you factor in its level of standard equipment, the $49,900 F Sport model is the best value CT 200h. Lexus Australia expects it to be the most popular model in the CT range.

Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review

The Lexus Hybrid Drive powertrain in the F Sport is the same as the rest of the CT 200h range. The system combines a 73kW/142Nm 1.8-litre four-cylinder petrol engine and a 60kW/207Nm electric motor for maximum combined power output of 100kW (you cannot simply add the two figures together as the engine and electric motor peak at different points in the rev range). That 100kW maximum power figure puts the F Sport on par with a base model Toyota Corolla. A nickel-metal-hydride battery powers the electric motor, and a continuously variable transmission drives the CT’s front wheels.

If it’s a sports hatch you’re after, the CT 200h F Sport will disappoint. You will be much happier with a Subaru WRX or a Volkswagen Golf R, both of which are cheaper to buy and significantly more fun to drive.

The CT 200h F Sport was never designed to be a sports car. It’s an ultra-frugal hatchback with a sporting theme and decidedly more character than the rest of the line-up. As a result, the F Sport competes with other high-end fuel-misers like the Audi A3 2.0 TDI ($44,900), Mercedes-Benz B180 CDI ($49,090), MINI Cooper SD ALL4 Countryman ($52,100) and the Toyota Prius i-Tech ($45,990).

Despite the common powertrain, the F Sport is the most engaging model to drive in the CT 200h range. Lexus’ engineers have given it a unique suspension setup with front and rear performance dampers and revised spring rates. The result is a tighter, stiffer ride with added feedback for the driver, and an overall more responsive and dynamic feel.

Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review

Depending on the conditions and your own mood, you can select between four driving modes. EV mode relies only on the battery and electric motor for propulsion. It works at speeds of up to 45km/h and will power the car continuously for around two kilometres. However, thanks to the CT’s regenerative braking system (which collects braking energy and stores it in the battery), you can easily travel twice that distance in slow city traffic or on quiet urban roads. In EV mode, the CT is reminiscent of a tram, quietly (and somewhat addictively) whirring and whistling as it accelerates and brakes.

When it comes time to call on petrol power you have three choices. As the name suggests, Eco mode is the most efficient. It tempers your throttle inputs and encourages the electric motor to support the petrol engine whenever possible. Any fears that the air conditioner will slow to a trickle when driving up steep hills are completely unfounded. The system is equally effective in all modes.

Normal mode is similar to Eco, although the accelerator is a little more responsive and the ratio of electric motor to petrol propulsion is more balanced. Both work well around town when you’re after a smooth, efficient drive, but the delayed reaction from the throttle does take a while to get used to and can frustrate at times.

Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review

When you’re after a more immediate response, Sport mode is your best option. The petrol engine jumps in almost instantly and the reaction to your inputs are much more like a conventional car. Sport mode is perfect for taking off briskly at lights and overtaking on the highway, and although the petrol engine sounds a little raspy under hard acceleration, it obeys your commands with minimal fuss.

The best thing about being in Sport mode in the F Sport model is the mood change within the cabin. The instrument panel illumination changes from deep blue to bright red and a tachometer replaces the standard Eco gauge. Even though the CVT doesn’t peak and blip like a traditional transmission, you still get a kick out of watching it rev spiritedly towards 5000rpm.

Those who prefer keeping an eye on smaller numbers will be equally entertained. All four models use just 4.1 litres/100km on the combined cycle, and unlike most cars, the CT is more frugal in the city (4.0) than on the highway (4.1) thanks to its hybridisation.

The Prius – at 3.9 litres/100km – is the only petrol-powered vehicle that pips the Lexus for economy in Australia. The other competitors mentioned above are all diesels and still trail the F Sport by a considerable margin: Audi A3 (5.7 litres/100km), Mercedes-Benz B180 (5.6 litres/100km), MINI Countryman SD (4.9 litres/100km). In terms of emissions, the CT 200h is the second-cleanest internal combustion car in the country, with a 95g/km CO2 average.

Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review

The cabin of the CT 200h is quiet, with minimal road, tyre and wind noise, and NVH levels are no longer a concern (they were when Lexus previewed the vehicle late last year). The interior of the F Sport is much more complete than the entry-level Prestige, which has a stripped-out feel. The F Sport’s split-level dashboard/console layout is clean and user-friendly, although there’s a lot of hard, grey plastic for a $50,000 car. It looks best at night when occupants are met by a dazzling array of light and colour.

The stereo is a treat to listen to from every seating position, but unfortunately you can’t stream music wirelessly via Bluetooth. The centre console contains USB and AUX ports, as well as a removable holder that perfectly fits an iPhone. Oddly, however, as the holder sits on top of the ports, you can’t use the two at the same time. You have to stash you phone or music player elsewhere when it’s plugged in.

The most disappointing aspect of the interior is the retractable central screen. It’s a low-resolution display with graphics that look about 10 years old. Less-tech-savvy drivers may appreciate the simple layout, but the iPod generation is unlikely to warm to it.

The satellite navigation is also a concern, something I found when programming a simple nine-kilometre trip from Sydney’s North Shore to the Fish Market in Pyrmont. The system located the destination and mapped a course, but lost all sense of direction somewhere along the way. I was intent on seeing just where it would take me, but gave up once I was beyond Sydney International Airport (around 15km off course) and still heading the wrong way. The CT 200h may be one of the most fuel efficient cars on the market, but if the sat-nav guides you on paths twice the necessary distance, the economy advantages will be quickly eroded. That said, perhaps I simply got it wrong.

Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review

Most drivers will find a sweet spot in their 10-way electrically adjustable seat. Both front pews offer plenty of support and include seat heaters to take the chill off the black leather lining. The only minor detraction is the lack of a usable right armrest, which takes away slightly from cruising comfort. The traditional door rest is too low and the doorsill is uncomfortably high. When you do plant both hands firmly on the leather sports steering wheel, however, it feels nice and compact and is well contoured.

Head, leg and shoulder room were not an issue for two five-foot-something back-seat passengers. However, both complained of slight lower back stiffness after an hour tucked away in the rear. With the battery and a space-saver spare packaged under the floor, the 375-litre luggage compartment lacks height, but is big enough to swallow the weekly groceries. It’s a larger luggage volume than the A3 and the MINI Countryman, but trails the Prius and the van-like B-Class. If you need more space, the 60:40 rear seats fold perfectly flat and open up 985 litres, which will satisfy the needs of most couples.

Looks are subjective, but the CT 200h is without doubt one of the sharpest cars in the premium small segment, and by far the hottest looking hybrid on the market. Over the base model, the F Sport gets smoky 17-inch alloy wheels; sports grille, bumpers, side skirts, rear spoiler, scuff plates and sports pedals; front fog lamps; F Sport badging; rear and rear-side privacy glass; and exterior mirrors with memory, self-dimming and auto-retract. The alloys look so good that they’re almost worth the $9910 price difference on their own.

Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review

Safety is first-rate with eight airbags (dual front, side, curtain and driver and passenger knee) and all the standard electric systems (ABS, electronic brakeforce distribution, brake assist, stability control and traction control), as well as emergency flashing brake lights and LED daytime running lights.

Given the similarities between the vehicles, the Prius i-Tech is likely to be the F Sport’s strongest competitor. If in-car technology is a priority, the Prius is well out in front with features like a radar-based cruise control system, head-up display, Touch Tracer interior functionality, LED headlights, solar panel ventilation and a moonroof all included in the $45,990 list price.

But for some people, all that tech will be too much. If all you want are two simple things – Prius-like fuel consumption in a package that looks and rides like a traditional hot hatch – the Lexus CT 200h F Sport is the only car in Australia that fits the bill.

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Lexus CT 200h F Sport Review
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  • Ovr40

    Are you sure it’s a 1.8? 73KW is very low for an engine of this capacity. Closer to a 1.5 or even smaller.

    • Alexander

      It runs on the Atkinson cycle for efficiency, which means the engine produces less power/torque.

    • Toyota Guru

      Ovr40, the engine is designed to run at maximum economy (Atkinson cycle), hence 73 kW on its own.

      • Toyota Guru

        lol, long time between reading and posting for me, u beat me to it Alexander.

    • Ovr40

      Thanks guys.

    • DFGeneer

      In fact, this engine has compression ratio of 8:1 and expansion ratio of 13:1. And the 1.8L volume corresponds to the expansion ratio.
      So it is safe to say that the effective volume of the engine (corresponding to the compression ratio) is (8/13)*1.8 which is about 1.1L.

  • Andrew of Melbourne

    Lexus needs to be carbon taxed along with toyota. Almost no visual product differentiation other than the two badges and they’re responsible for putting the most cars out on the roads.

    • ST

      May I suggest seeing your optomitrist for some shape recognition. Perhaps a stop sign is similar to a give way sign.

      • T

        Maybe you should consult a dictionary before posting. Your whole argument was based around this guy seeing an ‘Optometrist’ yet failed when (a) you couldn’t spell and (b) you hit ‘submit’ LOL

  • Roadtard

    Still ugly.

    • NotTheStig

      Very Ugly

      (BTW. Toyota/Lexus PR is in full swing with the voting…)

      • sven

        yeah, there’s a few Toyota employees on here tonight..company strategy apparently.

    • Kris

      whats your definition of a beautiful car which a middle class Australian can buy??

      • chnny

        kia optima

        • Sammo

          Saw two on the road the other day, stunning!

  • Golfschwein

    Current Toyota vehicles that are far more attractive than this car:-
    Corolla Seca
    Lexus GS
    Lexus LS

    Man, that C-pillar! Okay, inside’s nice.

  • http://www.vringer.com geyser

    That is one hell of an ugly car. Designers take note… Just because you can make it, doesnt mean you should !

    • Baddass

      I think it had a fair bit of potential, the C-pillar is just stuffed up.

      • Robert

        You probably wouldnt complain about that C pillar if you were on your roof

  • Shak

    Well, from what i could judge at the Sydney Show last year, it was quite well built and felt premium inside, but it did loo very frumpy up close. I guess the front end is ok. But as a whole it just looks meh…

  • Alexander

    One thing that peeves me about Toyota/Lexus is that they pick HIDEOUS colours for their cars. This dark red does no favours for the CT200 & it’s other colours (wth the exception of the F-Sport blue) are hardly exciting. I still have horrible memories of Vomit Beige & Sage Green Gen2 Prii, Emerald Green, Champagne & Maroon Camrys & other models in various other drab, boring colours. The Gen3 Prius has an improve pallete, the pearl white Prius looks great, although the rest of the range is in serious need of new colours.

    • http://baji192.wordpress.com Baji

      Have you seen this colour in person? It looks amazing! The paint in the sun is probably one of the best shades of red i’ve seen! It has a deep rich lustre to it that not many other cars have.

      Those pictures don’t do the paintwork justice at all.

  • Azza

    Looks ok in f-sport form, especially in this colour or is-f blue. c-pillars is deliberately ugly, probably to differentiate from corolla seca (similar rear, lexus is350-like front)

  • Force

    Lexus LS460 is one beautiful car, most people probably havnt seen it in flesh, but go eastern suburbs or near airport and you’ll see one driving by..

    It is very high class..

  • Oranjiuce

    Yeah I saw an Lexus LS460 the other day coming into the airport departure driveway thing.. And yeah it looks likeva very sophisticated, timeless and is just beautifully classy.. It’s also extremely quite for a 4.6L V8

    • Shak

      ut have you seen a Maybach. That thing is just gauche and OTT to the max. It looks ugly in pics and in real life. And i saw one in the weirdest of places, the Domestic Airport Carpark in Sydney.

      • Oranjuice

        what? A maybach is not a LS460, nor is it in the same segment..

      • Baddass

        Yeah that was pretty random…

        • Shak

          true, sorry, Just felt like sharing.

          • mrxandthexfactor

            Lexus LS is not ugly. The Maybach exterior design is in desperate need of botox

  • Andrew

    Despite what the others are saying, I reckon it’s a great looking sporty hatchback. More interesting than the dime a dozen GTI, and less freaky than than the focus ST. Just a pity it doesn’t have the same power, so not for me.

    • Kris

      show me a GTI which can get 4.1 liter/100kms on regular petrol and I will buy it!

    • tw

      It’s not sporty, it’s a hybrid. Therefore not in the same segment as a xr5 or a gti.

      • Devil’s Advocate

        You better hurry up and tell Ferrari/Porsche/Jaguar etc that a hybrid isn’t sporty then tw and for them to stop development of their hybrid models… 😉

        I do agree with the main point of your comment though, it is not really a car you can compare with something like an XR5/GTi/Golf R.

    • http://Skat ScottyC

      I saw one in the street on the weekend and it is quite hideous. So many angles and bulges it looks way over styled and dated already. Actually reminded me of the dark old days at Hyundai.

      You would pick a GTI in a heartbeat over this!

      • mrxandthexfactor

        Not really. The Mazda3 has the same problem. But the CT design has so much more finesse to it. The 3 is what you call Hideous. MkVI Golf GTI isn’t the best looking hatch around. The R is the best.

        • Devil’s Advocate

          I guess lots of people have extremely bad taste then considering the Mazda3 is Australia’s best selling car so far in 2011. :-)

  • MK

    Where is the Corolla Hybrid then?

    • Golfschwein

      This is it!

    • Able

      Still in Europe :)

  • Miop100

    I went to put my hard earned on this machine. Up close however the interior is very plasticky. Lots of the switch gear is Toyota and the engine is identical to the Prius. The legendary Lexus service seemed disinterested in even offering a test drive. Merc B class syndrome. Off to my great down to earth Toyota Dealer for a Prius

    • Kris

      which Lexus dealer was this?

    • Golfschwein

      A far better choice, Miop!

  • Kris

    I have always had a Lexus in my garage. I currently have a hybrid RX. The fuel economy is simply amazing.I test drove this car and its a real tech wonder. The only comparison is the Audi A3. Its Lexus’s customer service which makes me a loyal buyer of their cars. They spoil you.

  • Miop100

    I agree Lexus PR is very busy tonight. Why don’t you concentrate on better service instead on spin?

    • phill360

      Maybe they should tell the engineers to get back work and design a car that looks decent

  • Amero

    Lexus service and their products are simply too good..

  • Leyianart

    Sports model!?

    Ohhh that’s right it’s Toyotas concept of sports cars, how could of I not remembered.

    Not only is it a “cheap sports hatch” even the leather is cheap.


  • Alpine

    Lexus is one of my favorite car, when I’m 50 I’ll buy one for sure.. The Lexus LS!!!! love it

  • nickdl

    That horrible drone of the CVT was all over the telly when the GP was on. One journo described this as the worst Lexus since the ES300, it’s certainly a pretty bad car then. TBH I don’t know why someone would go past a Golf GTD if they wanted a sporty, more premium small hatch that is fuel efficient. It really defies logic why someone would buy one of these anyway, they’re too small to be practical and if you can afford that much for a little car, then petrol is hardly an issue.

    • sper

      lol, how can that even be possible, you barely hear the engine in this thing… give me “drone of cvt” anyday instead of cold diesel mornings…. hey mum, i got $100k car, it just rrraatles a bit.

      • Tosted

        Hahahaaaaaa yeah!! Diesel, what a joke, German cars in all are a joke, unreliable, expensive, expensive options, ugly and sound loud.. Give me a smooth, silent, comfortable, refined Lexus over a German farm rattler anyway!! Lexus LS460/600H over S-class and the mediocre 7 series.. The current Lexus LS460 is almost 6yrs old and it looks better then the new 2011 7 series!

        German farm rattlers lol

      • Kris

        … and it sounds like a tractor!

      • Golfschwein

        Never a falser word spoken by someone who obviously didn’t watch the celebrity race at the AGP this year. They sounded like a swarm of drunken bees, but then again, they were having their titzz wrung out and interior trim had been removed.

        These cars wouldn’t see which way a torquier, more powerful and superiorly suspended Golf 103 tdi went, let alone a GTD or a GTI.

        • nickdl

          Thank you for making an informed comment, although I thought the only changes were a roll cage. Everything else looked normal, in fact I think I saw a driver with the sat-nav on. Oh and to sper, this car isn’t $100k and most $100k diesels do not rattle, in fact most $60k diesels don’t. Obviously you have never driven or been in one…

          • Golfschwein

            I agree with everything you’ve noted, nickdl. You might have misunderstood me on one or two of my points.

          • Kris

            have you driven a hybrid or have you just watched it on tv?

          • Devil’s Advocate

            nickdl, the cars used during the GP also had their exhaust modified ie mufflers bypassed just like any other car that competes in production car racing. That is why people could hear them “buzzing” around the circuit.
            By the sound of it, you didn’t have the sound on when you watched the races because if you did you would know that and would have heard them!
            You are spot on though with the high end diesels, they are surprisingly quiet. Other than less numbers on the tacho, you wouldn’t know they were a diesel sitting behind the wheel!

        • Kris

          Wrong electric motor = 100% torque @ 0 RPM.

  • Gorg

    Lol Volkswagen is rubbish, poor resale, poor reliability, I see so much new golfs on the side of the road with blinking hazard lights on.. They’re also overpriced.. And are small

    • Leyianart

      I do basically 100k’s every day in Sydney roads and have never seen the so unreliable Golf’s on the side of the road like you mention. Either have I seen Renault’s on the side of the road it’s all fruit of your imagination.

      Can’t say the same thing for Toyota Camry’s Holden’s and Falcons.

      By the way I’m not a VW fanboy but I am a Renault Sport fanboy.

      • Jase

        Considering how much Toyotas on the road I’ve never seen them on the side of the road.. I guess that goes to show they’re very good..

      • Dan

        I haven’t seen any Renault’s on the road, period! If there are none on the road, how can there be any on the side of the road. If virtually none are sold here, then the cahnces of finding one on the side of the road are practically zero. Consider how many Toyotas are sold vs how many on the side of the road, that shows they’re very good cars!

        • Leyianart

          Not allot here in Aus but to say you don’t see any is a bit exaggerated. I see allot per day but in Europe they are used allot for Rent cars and sell like hot cakes, and never see Renault’s broken down.

          I couldn’t care less for VW!

          Funny thing Nissan is the best Japanese selling brand in Europe not Toyota or Honda.

      • Kris

        mate every 2nd car in Aus is a Toyota but how many are pulled over the road with their bonnet open? its relative. Other than the Falcodores, the most popular cars with their hazard lights on are Saabs and VWs. Each to their own.

      • Golfschwein

        I always considered it a bit of blood sport, spotting dead Camrys on the side of the road with their bonnets up and hazards on. Hey, that was me once, when my 45,000 km old Camry blew its head gasket!

        Summer’s gone, so they’ll be a bit more reliable for a while, just like the ads promise.

    • bangel

      Fairies in the bottom of the garden again .

    • bangel

      Poor resale , try 63% after 3 years , 53% crummer , 52% falcoon .

      That would equate to good build quality and reliability .

    • Kris

      Gorg, I saw one today on the M5, looked like a brand new Golf, just stopped and was being put on a flatbed. All I can say is VW has convinced Aussies that they are driving a “prestige” car. How many 10 year old golfs are on the road? hardly any?

      • Holicow

        yeah very true, Volkswagen has convinced australia to pay premium for a mediocre economic-box which are very unreliable and expensive.. I pity the people who choose to buy any VW, I just don’t see their purpose and what segment of the market they’re aimed at?..

      • Dan

        VW is a cheap/average brand in Europe. Every man and his dog own a Golf over there. Tell any European that you think VW is a prestigious brand and they will will laugh at you!! I am European by the way, and I am laughing right now haha.

        • Holicow

          Yeah it is, but here in Australia they have somehow convinced the people who would otherwise purchase Toyota to buy a Volkswagen and pay 20k extra with less fetures, less reliability and very bad resale value..

          • Kris

            as far I am concerned Volkswagen’s real competitor is Toyota. I also blame “motoring journalists” who keep pumping up VW to boost its sales. It used to be Holden once upon a time but at least it is Australian.

        • Leyianart

          Yes I can confirm this, but the Golf has been priced much higher than it used to be, but prestigious brand VW is not by far in Europe or for Europeans.

          • Holicow

            Yeah thats because in Europe people know that it’s just a average brand, where as here they don’t know..

            What about Lexus in Europe? Do you ever see new Lexuses driving by in eu? Have you ever seen a LS460?

          • Dan

            I’ve seen quite a few Lexuses there, but not as many. Having said that, most luxury cars there are German, but they are also much cheaper. For example most countries in Europe use E-class Mercs as taxis, they’re cheap, base E class is as affordable to Europeans as Falcodores are to Australians. Only reason why not as many people buy them there is due to the size (they prefer smaller cars) and fuel economy. Lexus (and generally most Japanese cars) are a bit more expensive there, due to the distance they need to travel to get delivered. Kind of what we are paying for German cars over here I guess.

        • bangel

          Toyota in the UK very average transport , dont rate very well with enthusiastic drivers at all , basically the fridge concept , lexus , fridge with frills .

        • Kris

          dead right plus the roads and fuel are way better in Europe!

      • Phil

        In Europe, millions upon millions of 10 year old golfs are on the rod.

        In Australia, not so many. 10 years ago, VW was still finding its footing from its recent relaunch after having been absent from the Australian market for 20 years.

        • Kris

          European cars live in very different conditions. the roads are good and they do not drive far. I will compare Aus with US or Canada. Are VW big in these markets? NO because they are expensive and are not value for Money.

          • bangel

            And americans will buy any crap thats served up with glitter EG toyota fridge called a LEXUS .

          • Lukaas

            Not true Bangel..

            In US, the buyers are just faced with so many models to choose from.

            In OZ, if you have a 35K budget to buy a family sized car… you have about 5 cars to choose from.

            In US, 35K = 70K in Oz, 35K budget there you are looking at Audi, BMW, Mercedes etc.

            BUT, guess what?… in US, a 35K car is actually EXPENSIVE…. Average Americans have MANY more expenses to prioritize than CARS. Hence they buy the most affordable and reliable cars. In Oz, we are fortunate enough to have Medicare and such… In US, Average Familes have 20K budget for a Family car… because they have to pay for hundreds to thousands of dollars a year on medical expenses that COST us Aussies 20-50 dollars… or even free.

            So, I dont think its right to say American BUY every crap on the market… I’ve lived there and they actually HAVE much much better selection than us.

            Young professionals there drive NEW Lexus’s IS or Audis/BMWs, since they dont have mortgages yet. Here You wont see that much at all.

            I’m just saying…. US market does not have CRAPPY selection at all… thats IGNORANT.

            heck, your average 60-70K salary person in Oz would be driving a car that average 30K-45K salaried person in US would…. if you earn 60K+ in US, you’d be driving 2 cars minimum… a Camry/Sebring and a Corvett Z06/Mustang/Nissan 370Z in the weekends…. true story.

          • Phil

            Funny you say that, China would perhaps be a market even more sensative to expense and value for money.

            China also happens to now be the biggest market for cars in the world – by far.

            VW is the best seller in China by a long shot and has been for many years.

            Also VW Jetta is often in the top 10 sellers list in USA.

            Regardless VW do not need to be big sellers to make money. Unlike Holden/Toyota/Ford etc, who sell 99% of their cars below RRP with on road costs included and have constant sales and discounts, most VWs (in Australia at least) sell at RRP plus on road costs.

    • http://Skat ScottyC

      Speaking from experience GORG? I’ve had a MV GTI for 4 years and have done close to 90,000km and never had an issue with it apart from a new battery. And resale is excellent. My old man is a wholesaler with 40+ years experience and he tells me VWs always command more money 2nd hand than similar Jap/ Korean cars.

      Do you homework first GORGY before you make silly comments

      • Lukaas

        thats because Australians perceive VW as premium..

        did you understand that? That was the main argument some people here brought up.

        I’m telling you, in US, VW is just like your normal Mazda, Toyota etc.

        Golf = Corolla over there, but less reliable… LOOK at the JD Power Ratings year in and out.

        Here, VW takes advantage of Australians having that “perception” of “Its German it must be GOOD” mentality.

        I’ll tell you what… I know from experience… maintenance cost of VW brings IN much more headaches than your typical Toyota maintenance costs…. thats on top of the more expensive retail price.

        So in a 5 year ownership, You would of paid an extra 10 grand for your Golf than your Corolla… for 95% of the market thats HUGE.

        • Scotty C

          As you know Lukaas we have a huge selection of cars to choose from. When you have $40,000 to $50,000 to spend on a car and want something with balls are you telling me you would by a Corolla?

          I know from experience, having owned 22 cars, including Mazda, Subaru, Ford, Holden, Suzuki, Mercedes, BMW and VW that VW quality is right at the pointy end.

          Stick to your Corolla mate and enjoy the thrilling drive it gives you

        • james cortez


          I agree. By the way when Bangel started talking about health care etc it is irrelevant and that person is full of crap. Just focus on cars and healthcare has nothing to do with it. You can counter by saying the avergae house in teh states cost 150 thousands US$ in oz it is four times.

          Anyway you are right. An M3 there is 1/3 of what it costs in OZ cause BMW really rips off OZ buyers!! Trust me, I know very well. Rationale a GTR in OZ costs less than twice in the states then why BMW raise their M# price by 200%. Boycott those snobs germans (AUDI, BMW, MERCEDES)

          • Phil

            Australia’s luxury car tax and GST is charged as a percentage.

            This means that a cars with a slightly higher base price, will increase exponentially when the taxs are applied.
            Also you will find that BMWs in USA are generally fitted to a lower equipment level compared to Australia.

        • Kris

          You said it. German must be good, thats what all the so called journalists say. VW has successfully marketed their cars, no doubt. In fact we have a few PR people here on what is a Lexus car review trying to peddle their wares. Some guy goes on to say Americans drive crap!!! I want to see these cars after 5 years. A 5-6 year old golf with 100,000 kms is practically worthless and resale proof. Ask any honest auto mechanic while that “fridge” corolla is still worth something.

  • o

    What is that weird thing to the right of the mouse pad?

    • o

      oops i meant to the left of the mouse

  • andronicus

    Agreed CA, the dash is horribly old fashioned.

    Meanwhile the sat nav looks like the one in my new Mazda3 SP25 which has an equally terrible GPS navigation. It is so obviously incorrect so often it is beyond funny, its a fault.

    • Dan

      Lexus uses Whereis maps, so I guess it’s more to do with bad programming on behalf of Whereis than Lexus itself. Having said that, most likely the author of this article didn’t set it properly. I’ve never had problems like that with my Lexus satnav though, I’d imagine this one uses the same satnav ECU as my IS.

  • Aapl

    There is hardly Lexus in Australia, go to California and every 2nd car you see is a Lexus, Toyota and Honda, Infiniti and Acura! Very nice cars there..

  • Miop100

    CT 200h will be a good car once engine upgraded to 2.4 litre, plastic dash revised, satnav upgraded and price dropped by $5000-7000. Go to Lexus.com and check out the US prices. Remember to reduce the US price by 10% because of strong Aussie dollar.

    • JD

      they should introduce Acura and Infiniti here in Australia, more competition -> hopefully better deals

      • Phil

        You might be fooled by tarted up Hondas and Nissans, but I’m not.

        Infiniti was launched here in the 90s, it did poorly and was pulled from market.

        • Shak

          Yeah, because they sold one very large and expensive car. Nowadays Infinti have a range of competitive vehicles with top notch drive ability and quality(Looks are subjective though). Infiniti is much more than Nissan with some extra Chrome, and while they may share parts, they have very different feels.

          Acura on the other hand, is just….well they have good drivetrains, that’s all i can say.

      • K20A

        Infiniti is only few months away.. don’t hold your breath for Acura. It won’t happen anytime soon. If you follow the market then you know how Honda Australia is doing at the moment.

        I for one, is looking forward to see Infiniti. Hopefully they can provide much needed competition for the Euro triumvirate.

      • mrxandthexfactor

        Acura = Honda (and I do mean, absolutely no difference)
        Infiniti = Nissan (again no difference between them and Datsun)
        Both these companies produce HIDEOUS MACHINES. won’t even call them cars.
        Lexus is only mechanically toyota, everything else is redesigned. Although having said that, the LX and GX are the weak ones.

        • Kris

          Audi is Volkswagen, Volvo is a Geely and worse Land Rover/ Jaguar is Tata. Whats your point?

          Have you ever driven an Infiniti or been in one? Nissan 370Z or GTR is a Datsun?? what are you smoking?

  • Miop100

    Anyone know the sevice costs and frequency for this vehicle.

    • Dan

      I’m guessing about 400 bucks per service. Plus you get the Lexus Encore Priviledges, which include a free pickup and delivery of your car, and they leave you with a complimentary new Lexus to drive around for the day. Very good deal!

      • Kris

        sshhh Dan, they will call us the Lexus PR team.

        • Kris

          + we do not want bogans around the Lexus yard.

      • Phil

        If I were “guessing” about a “Very good deal!” on a car service, I would not guess $400.

        Since when is $400 a “Very good deal!” for a service on a small car?

        • Phil

          I checked with a freind of mine who owns a Mercedes S class how much he pays for servicing.

          $450 at Northstar Mercedes Benz dealership for the ‘A’ service.

          This is for a very large, high end luxury sedan with a big V8 engine.

          It’s hard to believe how someone could think $400 was reasonable, let alone a “great deal” for a small car service.

  • Holicow

    @Dan yeah it makes sense, also most cars in EU are diesel and not gasoline..

  • Fruityy

    18000 Lexus were sold in the USA in April last month, with 16000 of them sold in California..lol (btw I’m from Miami)

    • Doctor

      Definitely something in the air in California….

      • Br

        California is home turf for Lexus, Acura and Infiniti.

  • Sam 300TD

    Sounds like a good way for Lexus to damage their F-sport brand. Release a car with the badge that doesn’t have any extra poke. Now when I see a lexus with a F badge I will wonder if it goes all right or if its just a badge to make it look cool. You’d never see an M Sport badge on a BMW that didn’t earn its place.(unless some bogan glued it on)

    • Dan

      Dude, both BMW and Audi have the M Sport and S-Line packages on their go slow models, this is nothing different!

      • Sam 300TD

        I stand corrected. I never heard of a go slow M3. Sounds like a linguistics trick M vs M-sport.

        • Dan

          I never heard of a go slow IS-F either. Sounds like a lingustick trick F vs F-Sport lol! Seriously though, slow 320i can come optioned with the M sport package, which is just the body kit and other cosmetic changes really. Just like the F-Sport. Nothing different.

        • K20A

          It isn’t linguistic trick.. but you’re right, the difference is that ‘Sport’ word. BMW never tries to hide this though.

          The sport package has been around for at least a decade (I remember E36 and E39s had them as an option).

          The travesty happened when people start sticking M badge in non-M cars (doesn’t matter whether it’s a stock or M-sport equipped). M badge only belongs in proper M cars!

          That’s why BMW never put a boot lid M badge on a M-sport package car. You have to look deeper (door sills, gear knob, steering wheel) to see the M badge on a M-sport package car.

          • mrxandthexfactor

            We don’t get it here is Oz but in America Lexus F-Sport is very big. You get tuning and suspension upgrades.

  • Miop100

    Does anyone else suspect ‘KRIS’ to be code for ‘I work for Toyota and hope to be promoted to Lexus Rep’

    • Kris

      No I work for Lexus. You stick to your VW or Skoda or Dacia or what ever you fancy.

      • Dan

        No you don’t. Please stop trolling.

  • dailydriver

    “Subaru WRX or a Volkswagen Golf R, both of which are cheaper to buy”

    A WRX – yes, Golf GTI yes but R – no chance!

  • Bluegreen

    Put down your double-shot of Hater-ade!
    Toyota/Lexus is the stuff, and you know it!

    LF-A is now THE #1 supercar!
    Better driver, better luxury, better sound, better sports car, more special than ANY other supercar, PERIOD!
    And there’s more where that came from!

    Prius #1 Hybrid.
    Camry best family sedan in the US.
    Corolla #1 selling car EVER!
    Lexus RX #1 luxury car in US.
    Lexus LS #1 car in quality US.
    Lexus #1 luxury brand.
    Toyota #1 brand period!

    Whether you like it, or your don’t like it
    LEARN to LOVE it!
    Because it’s the best thing goin’ today!

    • Manbearpig

      Ugh. So you’re saying this is the BEST luxury hatch on the market? Back to school for you.

    • Devil’s Advocate

      I know you are only doing a bit of fishing so I thought I should let you at least have a little fun! 😉

      But we are in Australia and this year the #1 selling car in Australia so far is the Mazda3 with the Corolla selling less cars last month than the Hyundai i30 and Holden Cruze…
      Plus WRT the Corolla being the best selling car EVER, you have to give it some perspective. You would hope the Corolla would be the best selling car EVER considering it is the longest running nameplate in the world…

  • bangel

    Still a boring little facsimile of a corolla , no power , no handling , down right ugly .

    Should sell well to nerdy accountants and others who cant drive .

    • bert

      What like you? i mean cant drive!



  • stevo

    Each to their own. Whether you like it or not, it will still sell heaps for one of the following: entry price/lexus badge/hybrid/after-sales service.

    • Kris

      You are right. The average Lexus owner does not the time nor the interest to look under the bonnet. We are used to certain level of service, luxury and refinement. The only car which I can compare this to will be the Audi A3 2.0 Tdi.

      • Dan

        Please stop trolling.

        • Kris

          Dan, I am not trolling. I do not want this site to be a VW/German car appreciation society.

  • bangel

    Wheres CAMRY LOVER , his mate needs his eloquence , he struggles with the english lanuage this troll .

    This car is a big mistake for the lexus image , a battery pack shopping trolley , who the hell is interested .

    • Kris

      and what are you bangel? you are just on an anti-Japanese car rampage or do I see some deep seated prejudices coming up, eh? Lets keep this discussion to cars and not get personal.

  • Miop100

    Lexus is a buy you make with your head . You think about the reliability, you concentrate on the service and you calculate the savings. A German car is bought with the heart. It feels great, drives great and puts a smile on your face. To hell with the pricey options, crap reliability and poor service. That’s what Lexus doesn’t understand.

    • james cortez

      Sale figures don’t lie. Go to California and see which “prestige” brand sell the most

      • Devil’s Advocate

        But we aern’t in California James, we are in Australia. People buy a Lexus in California not because they are the best cars per se, it is because they get the best concessions/discounts etc in California due to their pollution laws etc and Lexus’ vast range of hybrids. It is as simple as that…

        • Coindegg

          Rubbish!! In fact in California the Germans have much more incentives and discounts then Lexus.. Lexus sells well because they’re the finest cars in the world PERIOD.. just go see them, Lexus LS, GS, RX, IS & ES.. They’re the most sophisticated cars in the world.. Just go Wikipedia and read about Lexus, it explains it well..

          • Phil

            California accounts for less than 0.01% of the worlds population.
            Just because it sells well in one miniscule section of the world, doesn’t mean it sells well in the rest of the world – which it doesnt.
            Globally Lexus sells fewer cars than its major competitors.

          • Devil’s Advocate

            I was not talking about “Lexus the manufacturer” giving the concessions/discounts Coindegg. I was talking about things like the hybrid car tax rebate/credits and things like being able to use car pool lanes as well as being exempt from some parking fees etc etc. Because Lexus has such a large range of hybrids, it makes them more inviting because you can take advantage of these benefits.

            If you wouldn’t have gone off “half cocked” and read the comment properly you may have worked that out…

          • Devil’s Advocate

            I was not talking about “Lexus the manufacturer” giving the concessions/discounts Coindegg. I was talking about things like the hybrid car tax rebate/credits and things like being able to use car pool lanes as well as being exempt from some parking fees etc etc. Because Lexus has such a large range of hybrids, it makes them more inviting because you can take advantage of these benefits.

            If you wouldn’t have gone off on a tangent you would have worked that out…

  • Ford Man

    Id prefer a Ford Fiesta over this. Same performance. Same economy. Half the price. Better looking.

  • Hifol

    Lexus is #1 in most major markets except for Europe and China…

    • Manbearpig

      Tiny markets like Europe and China are hardly worth mentioning. Pointless comment is pointless.

  • F1MotoGP

    Total sale in Germany for Lexus was in April 2011
    Lexus CT 152
    Lexus RX 61
    Lexus IS 37
    Lexus LS 3

    According to Automotive News, Lexus Europe moved 17,859 vehicles, down 10% under last year.

  • Jupiter

    The RX has the worst handling… Its like Willy Wonker was responsible for steering. Minimal body roll, but the steering is like a toy.

Lexus Ct 200h. Hybrid Specs

Car Details
Body Type
New Price
Private Sale
$23,870 - $27,130
Dealer Retail
$24,790 - $29,480
Dealer Trade
$18,800 - $21,700
Engine Specifications
Engine Type
Engine Size
Max. Torque
142Nm @  4400rpm
Max. Power
73kW @  5200rpm
Pwr:Wgt Ratio
Bore & Stroke
Compression Ratio
Valve Gear
Drivetrain Specifications
Drive Type
Final Drive Ratio
Fuel Specifications
Fuel Type
Fuel Tank Capacity
Fuel Consumption (Combined)
4.1L / 100km
Weight & Measurement
Kerb Weight
Gross Vehicle Weight
Not Provided
Ground Clearance
Towing Capacity
Brake:0  Unbrake:0
Steering & Suspension
Steering Type
Turning Circle
Front Rim Size
Rear Rim Size
Front Tyres
215/45 R17
Rear Tyres
215/45 R17
Wheel Base
Front Track
Rear Track
Front Brakes
Rear Brakes
Front Suspension
MacPherson strut, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Rear Suspension
Double wishbone, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Standard Features
Control & Handling
Sports Suspension, Traction Control System, Vehicle Stability Control
Reversing Camera, Satellite Navigation, Trip Computer
Sound System with 10 Speakers
Rear Spoiler
Power Windows
Side Airbags, Seatbelts - Pre-tensioners Front Seats
Optional Features
Power Sunroof
Service Interval
12 months /  15,000 kms
48 months /  999,000 kms
VIN Plate Location
Driver Side Front Floor
Country of Origin