Lexus’s CT200h Hybrid Hatchback Updated for 2014, to Debut in China

2014 Lexus CT200h

When Lexus’s CT200h luxurious compact hybrid hatchback was introduced for 2011, it bypassed the premium-compact segment for a subsegment of premium-compact hybrids, of which it was the only game in town. Since then, it’s kept that segment to itself—perhaps a sign that “new” might be worth pursuing, but the results aren’t necessarily guaranteed to be good. With a dearth of competition and ho-hum sales, Lexus decided it’s time for the CT’s first major update, and the brand has just revealed the refreshed 2014 model ahead of its debut at the Guangzhou auto show in China. 

Details are forthcoming, but the two photos of the updated CT200h Lexus issued show that its styling has been brought in line with the latest Lexus look. That means the majority of the brand’s styling tweaks center around the grille and front fascia, which have been massaged to incorporate the luxury automaker’s signature spindle grille. Out back, the bumper gets an injection of testosterone thanks to a more aggressive diffuser-look lower bumper element and a pair of pseudo vents defining the rear corners. Oh, and there are also new wheels.  

2014 Lexus CT200h

Instrumented Test: 2011 Lexus CT200h Hybrid
Instrumented Test: 2013 Lexus RX450h Hybrid
Instrumented Test: 2013 Lexus LS600h Hybrid

Despite the oddity of the CT’s vehicle concept, which mixes the off-limits-for-Americans hatchback body style with a compact footprint and a hybrid powertrain, Lexus was able to move about 17,000 of the things last year. That’s more than Lexus sold in 2011, when it still offered the identically sized HS250h sedan—which has since been mercy killed—but falls way short of the more than a quarter-million new homes Toyota’s Prius found last year. We’ll have to wait and see if this sportier-looking CT200h backs up its new duds with an injection of driving pleasure, but we suppose Lexus could always release a bedazzled version like this epic CT.

About Alexander Stoklosa