The new Lexus CT 200h- for tomorrow’s forward thinking driver
Two of the ExpatWoman.com team were invited by Lexus to take part in their energy fuelled CT 200h Urban Drive Challenge last week. They were among the first to put the region’s pioneering luxury compact through its paces- navigating across Dubai to complete a series of tasks against the clock whilst generating the least mileage. They had to cruise along in Eco mode, feel the burst of power in Sport mode and rely solely on battery power in pure electric EV mode! Let’s see what they had to say!
Our lovely ultra blue Lexus CT200h.
Our day started at Al Badia Golf Club where we had to meet the Lexus reps- have a briefing and get introduced to our car!
We were car number 1 which was exciting and we got the funky ultra blue one- lucky us.
We had been set the challenge of visiting 4 pre programmed locations to visit and complete a task at each point, in under 2 hours and using the least mileage and best fuel economy.
We decided we would go to the furthest point out first and work our way back in.
The intrepid ExpatWoman.com drivers with David Stead of Al Hurr.
So off we roared in Sports mode to the Falcon Centre in Nad Al Sheba to find a hybrid falcon. The CT200h was a dream to drive- it was really nippy and powerful with excellent, responsive steering which helped us zip up the Al Khail Road in no time. The GPS system got us a bit lost in Nad al Sheba as there are a lot of new roads there but with a u-turn or two, we arrived at the check point and had our picture taken with the hybrid falcon as evidence we had been there!
We weaved through the obstacle course easily thanks to the smooth steering and manoeuvrability of the CT200h.
Next we had to make our way to a location on Beach Road to take part in the bamboo challenge- the speakers in the CT200h are made from bamboo and charcoal- Lexus have a great commitment to recycling and sustainability. We made great time to the next location and only took a wrong turn once! We had to drive the car through a series of bamboo obstacles making sure not to hit any of them- we passed with flying colours of course.
Make mine a skinny latte cappuchino.
Our next challenge was a coffee dash and dine at the bottom of Beach Road which we had to drive to in EV mode. The electric mode is so quiet it’s like the car isn’t turned on. It was perfect for driving down Beach Road- low speed and lot’s of stops for traffic lights and speed bumps- was nice to know we weren’t polluting this lovely area for once too! We managed to find the Lexus roadside coffee order check point and enjoyed the break- the car got many admirers while we were stopped there.
Our trusty GPS making sure we are going the right way!
So onto our last challenge- we were making really good time, were hopeful on the mileage- not made too many wrong turns and had been using ECO and EV mode as much as possible- in fact our next destination in Za’abeel Park was to check our energy usage. We got a bit stuck in traffic on Diyafah Street but managed to overtake one of the other teams which was exciting! After a wrong turn off Trade Centre roundabout (we both agreed it is our least favourite roundabout in Dubai- scares us!) we found the check point and our energy usage was looked into by the Lexus experts. We had more or less drained the battery with all our EV driving which was a good thing- meaning we had been using it where we were supposed to rather than just driving everywhere in Sports mode.
We managed to get in front of one of the other teams on the way back.
Then it was the last dash back to Al Badia Golf Course - we were so excited and really wanted to beat the other teams - we felt like we were on an episode of The Amazing Race. We did not break any speed limits we hasten to add! We arrived back second which was fine - at least we weren’t last.
After a lovely lunch the results were in and the teams from Car ME Magazine and Top Gear had won- we found out afterwards we had won on doing the least mileage but had lost on fuel consumption - we had to leave Al Badia in Sports mode and go to the destination of our choice - as we went to the furthest point we used a lot more fuel than if we had gone to a closer check point - rookie mistake but at least we know now.
We had both had a fantastic day and had really enjoyed putting the CT200h through its paces and learning all about hybrid technology and having the chance to drive a Lexus thanks to Al Futtaim Motors and the Lexus Team.
What the ExpatWoman.com team liked about the CT200h:
• Really comfortable interior - the seats were a dream
• Smooth, responsive and light steering
• It’s a compact car but it’s a 5 door which makes access to the passenger seats easy
• The feeling of safety - you don’t need a 4x4 to feel safe on the roads here - this car feels
solid and safe - it has amazing safety features
• The On/Off Power button - never been in a car that doesn’t have a key to start the engine
• Good size boot space and seats fold down for extra space
• Really sporty steering wheel and dashboard- with colours for which mode you are in
• Easy to operate - changing modes was simply the turn of a button
• Parking camera system - no more guessing where the curb is- easy to park
• Great sound system - for the tunes down Beach Road of course
• Kylie Minogue looks great in their advert for the CT200h - if Kylie likes it we like it
• It was fun to drive - so even though you know you are helping the environment it’s still a fun,
sporty, nippy and comfortable car to drive
About the Lexus CT200h- Full hybrid technology from Lexus
Powered by Lexus Hybrid Drive, the 5-door Lexus delivers leading-edge full hybrid performance, combined with exceptionally low CO2 emissions and great fuel efficiency. Dynamic and fun to drive, the breakthrough CT 200h sets new benchmarks for exterior finesse and interior quality, comfort and tranquillity.
Lexus is the only brand to offer a range of full hybrid luxury vehicles, which unlike mild hybrids are capable of driving in Electric Vehicle (EV) mode. In EV mode, progress is near silent, no fuel is burnt and zero emissions are produced.
You can read all about the CT200h here www.showyourenergy.com
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