Lexus CT 200h Long Term Test: Chapter Three Photo:
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Tony O'Kane | Nov, 23 2011 | 2 Comments


Cargo capacity (seats up): 375 litre
Cargo capactiy (seats flat): 985 litres

One of the downsides of petrol-electric hybrid design is that there’s typically less room inside for passengers and cargo - and it’s all because of the battery pack.

Alongside the need to accommodate the usual under-floor items like fuel tank, exhaust and rear suspension, the battery pack also needs to be put somewhere. In the case of the CT 200h, it ends up in the boot.

The result is compromised storage space. However, on the plus side, the boot floor of the CT is completely flat, the rear seatbacks fold flush and Lexus even managed to squeeze a space-saver spare wheel alongside the battery pack.

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Sandwiched between the spare and the boot floor is a foam tray that can also be used to hold smaller items, while a first-aid kit sits snugly in a compartment to the side.

Ingeniously, the cargo blind slots into a recess under the boot floor, which is handy when carrying large objects.

It’s not a big boot, though. Because the battery pack pushes the boot floor up, the cargo area is shallow. Fitting a modern pram in the back would be challenging, and wouldn’t leave much space for anything else.

There are no bag hooks either, and although Lexus quotes a cargo capacity of 375 litres with the rear seats in place, the CT’s boot doesn’t look anywhere near as capacious as the Volkswagen Golf’s - which measures in at only 350 litres.

Fold the backrests down and cargo capacity expands to 985 litres.

The CT 200h is not aimed at families carrying family clobber. As a small premium hatchback, Lexus has it targeted squarely at young professional couples - people who’ve yet to start a family and who’d rather pay extra to have their flatpack furniture delivered.

Other likely buyers are empty-nesters buying the CT 200h to complement a larger car that they already own.

There’s plenty of room in the back for a week’s shopping or a set of golf clubs, and for those who’ll likely end up buying a CT 200h, that’s likely to fill the bill.

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