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CT Challenge wrap up; More caffeine than gas consumed

A few weeks ago, we told you about the CT Challenge brought to us by NorthWest Lexus. The point was to see just how far we could get out of a tank of fuel in their new Lexus CT200h. Part of the fun included a contest where followers on Facebook and Twitter could win a weekend in the car by guessing just how far we’d go. Well, we’ve done the run, and congrats to Ryan May and Kevin Morrison for their guess of 750km. When all said and done, we made it 757km, but what a trip it was!

Click the jump to follow our fun.

It all started on a Friday night. We (fellow AutoNorther Jarrett Henshaw in tow) met at NorthWest Lexus in Brampton and became familiar with our new ride, a black CT200h Premium. After a few pictures, we hit the road to cover as much ground before the threatening skies opened up. With the tank filled right to the brim, our distance to empty was showing 881km. There we were, a Lexus full of fuel and no set destination, which begged the question; where first? It seemed fitting to drive to the only factory that builds Lexus’ (Lexi?) outside of Japan; Cambridge, here we come!

During the drive to Cambridge, we met all the congested, construction riddled traffic you’d expect while trying to escape the GTA on a Friday night. After exploring Camebridge a bit, and enjoying a good solid dinner, we head up to Barrie, still in awe that the fuel gauge hasn’t moved (there may have been some yelling at the dash “WHY WON’T YOU USE FUEL!?!”)

Bright and early, we’re back on the road, heading to Wasaga Beach. After talking to a few curious locals about the CT200h and looking out over the quiet and rainy beach, we head back on our way and swing by the picturesque Sparrow Lake.

We continue onto Highway 11 North, and plug along heading north in the rain. We make it to Bracebridge, deep in the heart of cottage country. Among the sea of SUVs and minivans, all in the midst of opening the cottages for the season, the CT200h’s handsome looks and useful hatchback shape held its own in the all too important parking lot style wars. At this point, we make one of our many (many) stops at that all too famous shrine to a famous hockey player, and enjoy another one of their fine cups of coffee. We take this brief pause to consider our next move.

By this point we have travelled 593 KMs at an average of 5.2KM/100L, and are assured by the CT we can make it another 221 KM. We make an executive decision and head to Peterborough to see the historic lift locks.

As we head south on the 11, and head towards Peterborough, the weather turns somewhat dreary again, but we trundle along through central Ontario and are soon approaching Peterborough. As we roll through the picturesque city of Peterborough, our countdown is now firmly planted in the single digits, we decide to ready ourselves and top up our jerrycan.

While entering downtown Peterborough, sitting at a red light, the ominous “0 KM Left” finally rears its head. Being at a busy intersection, we had to continue for another block or so before we could find somewhere safe to fuel up. As we shut the loyal CT off, the rain starts to pour harder than it has in sometime.

For a brief moment, as we toy with the idea of pushing the envelope and seeing just how much further we could push the tank, we are quickly haunted by the warning words we had received about the worries of running out. Neither of us excited at the idea of having to find a Lexus Technician in Peterborough at 8pm on a rainy Saturday, we concede and top up the tank. We made it within three kilometres of the locks, so close...

On our drive back to Barrie, I quickly abandon the ECO mode, change to SPORT mode, and start to explore the CT a little more. After a quick blast across Central Ontario, and back to Barrie we average 6.1L/100kms.

While it may not be appeal to the usual Lexus owners, the CT200h should find a niche among a bit younger of a crowd. For those want a stylish, luxurious, hybrid, they’ve found it. Thanks again to NorthWest Lexus for putting us up to the Challenge.

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