<A HREF="http://www.worldcarfans.com/110022324709/lexus-ct-200h-full-details-leaked/lowphotos#3">A page from the Press Brochure issued by Lexus for the CT 200h world premiere</A> at the 2010 Geneva Auto Show informed us that the vehicle would be "available in a choice of ten colours, of which two - Flare Yellow and Fire Agate - are newly developed". Yet, when shortly thereafter Lexus USA unveiled its CT 200h color palette on the <A HREF="http://www.darkersideofgreen.com/colors.html">Colors page</A> of its dedicated darkersideofgreen.com microsite, only seven exterior colors were evident. These seven colors appear in <A HREF="http://www.ct200hforum.com/forum/lexus-ct200h-appearance-body/117314-exterior-color-options.html">a CT200hForum.com thread started by member TSoprano</A>.
At this point, it is helpful to note that Lexus exterior colours receive different names in virtually every market in which its vehicles are sold and we should also note that the Lexus Europe site gives its colours names that are different from those used in the United Kingdom (Great Britain). thus, our listing below for the original 7 colours lists them below, in the same order, but, behind the colour names for the U.S. (and, presumably, Canada), we'll add their equivalent names in the Lexus Europe website, for the United Kingdom (Great Britain) and Oceania (Australia and New Zealand) markets, followed by the universally-used colour code. Please note that a number of these colours use multiple names within the same market (especially in Oceania) depending on model, and, in those cases, all the possible names are cited.
Obsidian / Black / Velvet Black / Onyx (or Black) / 212
Daybreak Yellow Mica / Solar Yellow / Flare Yellow(?) / ? / ?
Smoky Granite Mica / Dark Granite / Cadoxton Slate / Graphite (or Dark Grey Mica) / 1G0
Brown Spice Mica / Sienna Brown / Fire Agate(?) / ? / ?
Tungsten Pearl / Hakuren Silver / Argento Ice / Silver (Mica) Metallic / 1G1
Starfire Pearl / White Pearl / Arctic (or White) Pearl / White Pearl / 077
Matador Red Mica / Morello Red / Mesa Red / Vermillion (or Burgundy or Red Mica Crystal Shine) / 3R1
So, what are the three exterior colours that will be available in Europe (and, most likely, Japan) that won't be offered in the United States? A new <A HREF="http://www.lexus.eu/about/concept-cars/view-cars/ct-200h/index.aspx#/colours">CT 200h Colours page on the Lexus Europe website</A> answers this question. Before we get to the answers ourselves, though, a few clarifications are in order. Only 2 of the 10 colours are exclusive to Lexus CT. These colours were referred to in the original Press Brochure as Flare Yellow and Fire Agate, yet the Lexus Europe website now uses the Solar Yellow and Sienna Brown denominations. Are Flare Yellow and Fire Agate, then, names to be used in Great Britain? Or did Lexus simply decide against using these colour names? The answer is unclear at this point, but we should know closer to the car's on-sale date. Conversely, another point we should make very clear is that, common name notwithstanding, the CT 200h's Solar Yellow is not expected to be a reprise of the much-loved bright yellow shade of the same name that was available on 1st-generation Lexus IS models. Rather, the new Solar Yellow should be more of a mustard/gold hue reminiscent of the colour used in the Lexus LF-Ch concept car that previewed the Lexus CT 200h.
Here, then, are the three exterior colour choices that will be offered in Europe but not in the United States (and, probably, Canada). Again, we're listing the information as U.S. / Lexus Europe website / U.K. / Oceania / universal colour code:
Cerulean Blue Metallic / Silvery Blue / Cerulean Blue / Blue Pearl / 8U9
Ultrasonic Blue Mica / Ultrasonic Blue / Ultra Blue / Flame Blue or Ultrasonic Blue / 8U1
Black Opal Mica / Dark Opal / Obsidian Black / Elysium Black / 214
Although Black Opal might be close enough to Obsidian that it's no big loss for us in North America, the fact that such an eco-aware vehicle as the Lexus CT 200h is not offered in blue or green, colours that are widely seen as symbolic of the movement, is somewhat odd. While the color options are seemingly set in stone for the 2011 model year, here's hoping that Lexus reconsiders for 2012 and offers us those shades of blue. At the very least, a bold, bright, in-your-face Ultrasonic Blue would be very much in keeping with Lexus CT's purported sporty, enthusiast-friendly, darker side of green personality.
Beyond solving the mystery of the three extra exterior colours, the new Lexus Europe CT 200h Colours page also reveals the three wheel options available in Europe. Standard is a 15" five-spoke wheel which, while not unattractive in and of itself, features a fairly flat face and tall tire sidewalls that are too reminiscent of the current, 3rd-generation Toyota Prius' standard wheels. The first upgrade option is a set of 10-spoke, 16" wheels that, at a glance, appear similar to the widely seen and photographed 10-spoke, 17" wheels minus the curved alternating spokes. And those 17-inchers are, of course, the third and final factory upgrade. Unless, that is, Lexus sees fit to offer something more compelling as part of the F-Sport accessory line here in the States...
Insofar as interior options, it's near-certain that North America will also offer less choices than other markets. Other Lexus models sold in Japan certainly offer a plethora of interior options unavailable elsewhere (some under the L-Select banner) and it appears that Europe will offer, at a minimum, a black fabric (or, probably, microfiber as on the 2011 Lexus IS V6 F-Sport sedans) that won't be offered in the United States as an alternative to NuLuxe (faux leather) in Ecru, Black or Caramel, and genuine Leather in Black or Water Grey. The CT 200h black fabric/microfiber interior is shown below.