Mike Stevens | Apr 27, 2010

FOLLOWING its unveiling at at Geneva earlier this year, Lexus has today announced that the 2011 Lexus CT 200h will get an Australian debut in the first half of next year.

"CT 200h will be Lexus' most significant vehicle since the introduction of the IS Line, bringing with it a whole new range of customers to the brand," Lexus CEO Tony Cramb said today.

Based on the LF-Ch concept revealed at Frankfurt last year, the Lexus CT 200h has undergone a number of design changes to make it ready for market, the wide haunches and extravagant lights of the concept giving way to more production-friendly versions.

While specific output figures have not been revealed, the CT 200h is powered by a 1.8 litre VVT-i four-cylinder petrol engine combined with a rear-mounted electric-drive motor/generator.

Power is sent to the front wheels via an electrically-controlled continuously variable transmission (E-CVT).

The electric motor draws its power from a nickel-metal hydride battery pack, and like the Prius, the hybrid hatch can be driven in all-electric mode.

Three driving modes are available: Eco, Normal and Sport - allowing the CT 200h to live up to its sporty styling.

Suspension is managed by MacPherson struts up front and a double-wishbone setup with a lightweight trailing arm at the rear. At each corner sit 17-inch alloys.

The rear springs and shock absorbers have been positioned to minimise intrusion into the rear storage area. Rear storage is listed as 345 litres with the rear seats up, and 700 litres when laid flat.

The CT 200h measures 4320mm long, 1765mm wide and 1430mm tall, making it slightly smaller than the Toyota Prius.

Inside, an assymetrical dash inspired by the LF-Ch concept is divided between the 'upper Display Zone' and a 'lower Operation Zone'.

Features include an eight-inch LCD multi-display screen and Lexus' Remote Touch multi-function control.

Lexus says front and rear passenger accommodation is among the most spacious in its segment, although no specific figures have been offered.

"The traditional definition of luxury vehicles is changing," Mr Cramb said.

"Today consumers are looking for efficient vehicles that do not compromise on driving experience and features. Lexus' range of hybrid vehicles and the CT 200h are the vehicles for them."

Specific dates and pricing have yet to be revealed, but more details are expected as the launch of the CT 200h draws nearer.

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