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Switching from GS to CT? CT owners tell me why I should or shouldn't consider it?

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Old 07-14-14, 02:09 PM   #1
BinaryJay
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Default Switching from GS to CT? CT owners tell me why I should or shouldn't consider it?

Firstly, I'm going to apologize for being lazy and posting this thread instead of sifting through the entire model forum first. But I'll make this as specific as possible.

I've owned a 2006 GS300 AWD for what seems forever now. I love that it drives like a tank, I love having AWD and I love not having an SUV. However, I bought it before I had kids... years have passed and now I have two. The trunk on the 3GS is nearly completely useless and almost since the day I traded in my Matrix for the GS I have been missing the hatch and fold down seats.

I am interested in the NX coming out (has AWD etc), but for various reasons I just can't bring myself to buy a new car, let alone another new first model year car. The CT looks like a good fit for us, we live in the city so don't want anything too big. The hatch means we can (if it is anything like the matrix was) fit a lot of stuff into a small car when we need to. I don't mind the CT styling at all and I assume it probably has compatible lug patterns etc. so I can reuse the set of winter wheels for my GS.

Now, we don't drive much ... maybe 2000 miles a year, so the gas savings angle on a hybrid really does not excite me much. The fear of having a battery self destructing with time instead of use kind of does bother me - unwarranted?

Is there anything about the CT you guys think would drive me crazy coming from an arguably "higher end" model like the GS? I expect the interior will seem cheap in comparison but I'm OK with that as long as it isn't a creaking rattling mess.

Are there any CT model years that are "avoids", any very common big problems in general to worry about? I really do want to trust that Lexus/Toyota are trying to learn from their mistakes in recent models and still reluctantly trust their product over other car makers. Really what I want to know is whether or not the CT is considered a typical bulletproof Toyota product or not. I want to be able to drive it around the city a few times per week and basically not have to worry about this or that exploding on me for a very long time.

Any other thoughts? Should I wait (years, possibly, if I intend to wait for a decently used one) for the NX200t and get my non-hybrid, AWD with a hatch or will the CT probably fill my needs now for less money and I'll just have to get over the fact that I might not be able to park on top of snow banks any more without worrying about getting stuck?
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Old 07-14-14, 02:28 PM   #2
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I could of sworn I saw a consumer reports article showing the CT as having the highest reliability scores for its tier.

Also regarding space...have you TRIED to put in a stroller in the back? I'm not sure what you have, but for me, as soon as I put the stroller in, there is nothing else short of loose clothing that fits in there. If you ONLY drive 2k miles a year...perhaps leasing an EV might be a better idea.
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Old 07-14-14, 05:01 PM   #3
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based on reading your information, the CT is not for you. you dont drive enough for the mileage to matter and the CT isnt going to be big enough for you.
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Old 07-14-14, 05:44 PM   #4
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I believe GS wheels are 5x114 while CT wheels are 5x100 so you will not be able to swap over.
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Old 07-14-14, 05:58 PM   #5
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It depends on how old your kids are, but if you plan on having the 2 kids in the back seats and hope to carry anything like a stroller in the trunk, the CT is not the car for you. I love that fact that I can get 45 mpg, but the trunk in the CT is a joke. The Prius has more trunk storage. If you are not having the kids in the back and have the room to fold down the seats, it might be okay for you.

We also got the CT before kids, but we are now expecting and its too small for a family car. My wife drives the CT now and I just got a 2014 RAV4 as our family car. I plan on getting a RX450h once our CT lease ends next year and the wife will drive the RAV4. If you are looking for a family car, I would look elsewhere.

If you haven't already done so, I would check out the CT in person so you get a better idea on the size of the car. Its a nice car, but its not the biggest car out there.
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Old 07-14-14, 08:59 PM   #6
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Sounds like it's smaller inside than I imagined, I have not actually checked one out closely but was kind of assuming that it was similar inside to a Matrix. I know my old 2003 Matrix XRS would have done the job.

Guess I'll wait and see how the NX turns out or go to the dark side and start thinking about that Volvo XV70 again. The RX really does nothing for me, I do like the GX but I feel they are too much vehicle for us.

I secretly want to make the BMW i3 work for us but I know that's crazy with two kids under 5 in car seats... but I like the whole idea of those things. No fluids to change even if you hardly drive it, no gas, no body that will rust and a range that is fine for 364 days of the year for us. I wish EVs were a couple of generations more mature and there were more choices.
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Old 07-15-14, 06:11 AM   #7
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The CT is smaller than a Matrix. If you really only drive 2000 miles a year, getting a hybrid is kind of a waste... because you are probably doing short little trips and your battery won't have time to charge up. Maybe a plug in hybrid so you will be on battery most of the time?

I don't like the RX either. I think of it as my mom's friends cars. Because all of them drove RX's. Have you thought about Tesla? The Model X is going to come out next year...
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Old 07-15-14, 06:44 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lcneed View Post
The CT is smaller than a Matrix. If you really only drive 2000 miles a year, getting a hybrid is kind of a waste... because you are probably doing short little trips and your battery won't have time to charge up. Maybe a plug in hybrid so you will be on battery most of the time?

I don't like the RX either. I think of it as my mom's friends cars. Because all of them drove RX's. Have you thought about Tesla? The Model X is going to come out next year...
Sure Model X looks awesome (even though I personally have a hard time getting over how awful the noses of the Tesla cars seem to look)... but it's also going to cost something like a 80-100 grand. Forget that, completely ridiculous. BMW i3 is already, IMO, ridiculously priced at like 45K for what it is.
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Old 07-15-14, 01:32 PM   #9
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agree with all the sentiments above. the main issue is that you just don't drive a whole lot, so if your GS is working, why make the switch? the 06 GS was beautiful inside, but it's older now and the CT interior IMHO is very nice. i was pleasantly surprised at this class of car with low price point how the interior felt classy, clean and up to date. no rattles, issues, etc. i did add bamboo trim to spruce it up and i have the NAV, full leather package with LED lighting also.

i had an 06 GS430 and now the 11 CT200h. it's true the trunk is small, but we got the CT when my kids were 1 and 3. now they are 4 and 6. our lease terminates next week and we have replaced it with a Model S for more space.

to be fair, the CT was great for the 3 years and i am sad to let it go. it's been great around town, and i have two britax seats still in the back. it DOES fit my double City Mini stroller in the trunk, but like others said, not much else. i can do my backpack and some knick knacks comfortably with that stroller in there.

i don't need the double anymore, but there are times i went to costco with the CT and ended up buying way more things than i anticipated and literally the car was full from window to window. i guess that's my fault for not bringing the bigger car, but you know how it goes when you shop at costco ... despite being a hatchback, i think the fact that it has a battery back there makes the floor of the trunk higher than it looks so the overall height for cargo space isn't that much better than a sedan. you can stack it as high as the roof, but then you have no rear visibility either.
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Old 07-15-14, 05:40 PM   #10
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As other have said, because you drive so little a hybrid is not the best choice IMO. If I was in your shoes, I'd look into a...Chevy Volt...although being Canadian, I'm not sure how the government incentives will work (which is one of the main reasons why you would get the Volt).
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Old 07-15-14, 05:41 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by lexuslover View Post
despite being a hatchback, i think the fact that it has a battery back there makes the floor of the trunk higher than it looks so the overall height for cargo space isn't that much better than a sedan. you can stack it as high as the roof, but then you have no rear visibility either.
Good point, I think that's the disconnect between what I'm imaging the cargo capacity being and the reality. I think the turbo NX will likely be a better fit for us if I don't find a really good deal on an XC70 with a half decent amount of warranty remaining. The GS does the job, but I'm starting to feel like it might be a ticking time bomb engine wise and right now it still has some pretty good residual value since it only has about 70,000 miles on it - it had 60,000 miles on it when I bought it around 5 years ago.

Because we need drive so little, getting a brand new car is just a little bit unthinkable as the warranty will pretty much go completely to waste. Same goes for leasing - you just end up paying for mileage that never gets used. If it wasn't for the kids we wouldn't need a car at all - but if I'm going to have a car I still want something that I can actually enjoy owning even though realy it ends up being a big waste of money for what amounts to little more than vanity. Oh well.
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Old 07-16-14, 11:43 AM   #12
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I come from SC300, SC400, LS400.

Picked up a CT last year new. Never should have bought the car. I have a 1 year old and a 3 year old. Both in car seats.

Space is not a problem.

I fit a full dual stroller in the back with kids in the back seat and wife in front.

I like the nav, keyless entry etc.

I drive 25K miles a year. Gas savings is nice. But I am dying to get rid of my CT, and will soon. Only car I owned in my life (out of 37), I never opened the hood.

Car doesn't inspire me at all. REliablity is there.

I wouldn't recommend it. Has no spirit, soul....

If you want an appliance, great ride. Should have listened to my CL friends and never bought it.
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Old 07-16-14, 01:54 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edgalang View Post
As other have said, because you drive so little a hybrid is not the best choice IMO. If I was in your shoes, I'd look into a...Chevy Volt...although being Canadian, I'm not sure how the government incentives will work (which is one of the main reasons why you would get the Volt).
Pretty much the same. We get up to 8500 back (17 kWh or more) for EV or PHEV.

The volt is such an ugly beast ... and it's a chevy.

You know what I didn't even know that the volt was a "hatch"... I honestly have never seen one up close in person. It's probably the same issue as the CT trunk wise though.
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Old 07-16-14, 03:11 PM   #14
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You should drive a CT extensively before you make the switch to be sure you're going to like it.

I hate to be harsh, we're all CL siblings here...but I've had a CT as a loaner and its the only Lexus I've ever driven that I really disliked. Not every vehicle they sell is a vehicle I would buy, and in some segments I think competitors have better vehicles (for instance I'd never buy an RX, GX or LX....), but the only Lexus I've driven that I could say I really disliked is the CT.

Its coarse, unrefined, loud on the road, cheap inside, feels light and unsubstantial. Doesn't feel like a Lexus at all. We had a Prius some years ago, and it reminds me a lot of the Prius...thats not a good thing as I hated that Prius too.

If you were interested in a CT...I'd tell you to just get a Prius or a Prius V for less money and more room. The drive is very comparable, even interior quality is pretty comparable on upper trims.

I wound never, ever trade my GS for one...even if it got 100MPG. If I wanted a high MPG car I'd buy a different sort of car. This is no joke, but when my service tech brought it around he apologized that it was all they had. When I told him that it was fine and I had never driven one...he said to remember he apologized after I had driven it...I thought that was a little much as its not a bad little car, its just not a Lexus.
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Old 07-16-14, 05:15 PM   #15
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I agree 100% with everything you said!!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SW13GS View Post
You should drive a CT extensively before you make the switch to be sure you're going to like it. .
This was my mistake. Having many other lexus products, I expected it to be on par. It isn't. After owning so many cars in life, this was the biggest purchase decision I made.

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Originally Posted by SW13GS View Post
I hate to be harsh, we're all CL siblings here...but I've had a CT as a loaner and its the only Lexus I've ever driven that I really disliked. Not every vehicle they sell is a vehicle I would buy, and in some segments I think competitors have better vehicles (for instance I'd never buy an RX, GX or LX....), but the only Lexus I've driven that I could say I really disliked is the CT..
I don't think you are harsh. I think you are speaking the truth. Since I own one, I know you are telling the truth.

Sadly, I wasn't smart like you, and ended up buying it. Will be getting rid of it shortly. I also agree with you on the RX/GX but disagree on the LX.

LX570 is a fantastic machine, though I prefer the Toyota LC version, albeit the same truck.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SW13GS View Post
Its coarse, unrefined, loud on the road, cheap inside, feels light and unsubstantial. Doesn't feel like a Lexus at all. We had a Prius some years ago, and it reminds me a lot of the Prius...thats not a good thing as I hated that Prius too. .
I think the coarse and unrefined nature is waht ticks me off the most. I actualy bought the CT so that I didn't have to own a Prius. I know they are pretty same, but the $$ paid more for the Lexus isn't there at all...


As I said I wish I never bought a CT, and listened to my CL friends here who told me not to. Live and learn.

Wonder how painful $$ this lesson will be when I sell my pristine CT soon.
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