Lexus CT Owner Blog: The CT 200h vs. IS 250

Lexus CT 200h Badge

Before purchasing the CT 200h, I went through the process of choosing between the hybrid hatchback and a base-model IS 250 sedan.

Why these two models? Price was the controlling factor — I had a definite budget and the base-model IS 250 with all-wheel drive was at the very top end.

Here are the key reasons for choosing the CT:

  • I really liked the idea of owning a hybrid F SPORT, and the CT is the only model in the lineup with both options. If the IS 300h had been available in Canada, it would have been my first choice.
  • The 2.5-liter engine in the IS 250 paired with the AWD system is a sluggish combination, and it’s made worse by lackluster fuel economy. The CT may have even worse performance, but makes up for it with the 42 mpg fuel economy.
  • Options also figured in — for the same approximate price as the base-model IS 250 AWD, I was able to get the CT 200h F SPORT package with heated seats, LED headlights, and a real leather interior.

All of these points pale in comparison to the biggest reason for choosing the CT — after years with the 1994 LS 400 and a 1999 Mercedes C230, the new Lexus would be my family’s only car. Simply put, my wife prefers hatchbacks over pretty much every other vehicle, save for the out-of-our-price-range RX.

Even if I had a list of reasons for preferring the IS, we likely still would have ended up with the CT — such is a life of marriage. Luckily, it’s what we both wanted, and so far it’s been a perfect fit.