LATHAM, N.Y., June 8, 2011 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — There is typically a dividing line between cars made for sporty fun and those built for economy and safety, but Lexus has shaken things up with its new CT 200h. The hybrid hatchback produces thrills, saves on gas, and, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), potentially saves lives. Available at Greater Albany Lexus dealer New Country Lexus of Latham, the 2011 Lexus CT 200h was recently named a 2011 Top Safety Pick by the IIHS, making it the only small sport hybrid to receive the honor.

As the newest hybrid from Lexus, the 2011 CT 200h was subjected to a battery of tests by the IIHS to determine the car’s crash-worthiness. The Lexus CT 200h achieved the top rating of good in front, side and rear impacts, as well as in the new roof strength test that requires that vehicles be able to withstand four times their own weight. The CT 200h easily met this requirement, holding up 16,238 pounds, or slightly more than five times its own weight.

“A sports car needs a solid chassis for handling as well as safety, so Lexus put a lot of effort into the structure of the CT 200h,” said Eric Rosen, general manager of New Country Lexus of Latham. “A sport-tuned suspension can’t do its job without a solid foundation, so building a strong, safe platform aids performance and crash-worthiness at the same time.”

Standard on all CT 200hs at Lexus dealers, eight strategically positioned airbags add to the sporty hybrid’s safety credentials. Dual-stage and knee airbags are designed to protect front passengers, while both front and rear passengers are treated with front side and side curtain airbags to help cushion occupants in certain frontal and side shocks. Meanwhile, the CT 200h incorporates the Whiplash Injury Lessening (WIL) seat concept, which reduces the chance of neck injury during a crash with a new seat back structure and headrest design.

For most customers, the CT 200h’s safety features will be an afterthought though when they are exposed to the vehicle’s luxury and sport features. Passengers will quickly notice the SmartAccess engine start button and leather-wrapped steering wheel, and the low set seats are bolstered to keep passengers stable while the corner-carving suspension glues the CT 200h to the road. Double-wishbone rear suspension and MacPherson struts in the front feature Yamaha lateral performance dampers to improve handling while filtering out unwanted disturbances from bumpy roads.

Power in the CT 200h comes from a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine paired with an electric motor for a combined 134 horsepower and a 42 mpg combined city/highway fuel economy that is higher than any luxury car on the market. Owners can choose from four drive modes, ranging from more fuel-efficient to more spirited. EV mode will run the car on electricity alone for short distances, while ECO mode limits use of climate control and evens out acceleration to save on gas. Built for quiet and smooth travel, Normal mode offers everyday, all-around performance, while Sport mode provides extra juice for more adventurous travel on driver-friendly roads.

“The CT 200h defies the stigma that hybrids have to be ponderous and boring to drive,” Rosen added. “It’s great for zipping through New York traffic and equally fun for cruising in the Adirondacks on the weekend. When Lexus designs a hybrid, they do it with the driver in mind as well as the environment.”

About New Country Lexus of Latham:
Elite of Lexus award-winner New Country Lexus of Latham is where New York Lexus shoppers find the hottest new Lexus models like the CT 200h and the RX 350. The joy of Lexus ownership goes beyond the buying experience, and the skilled Lexus service technicians at New Country ensure that Lexus owners continue to get the most out of their vehicle. Part of the New Country Motor Car Group family of dealerships, New Country Lexus of Latham is located at 999 New Loudon Road, Route 9 in Latham, N.Y. Browse their Lexus inventory online at, Like them on Facebook at , or reach them by phone at 888-230-5761.

Media Contact:
Robert Maizner, of New Country Motor Car Group, 518-584-7700.