The 2014 Lexus CT 200h has less room inside than a Toyota Prius, but the two cars aren't really aimed at the same buyers. The front seats are comfortable, but the back seats will be short on headroom for tall riders, and tight on legroom for any adult. And because the battery pack sits under the load deck, the cargo bay is shallow, offering room only for a large load of groceries.
The CT is best used by two people with the 60/40 split rear seatback folded down--they flip forward in one easy motion--to give a long, flat cargo floor that's just low enough to carry small pieces of furniture or cartons.
Up front, however, the driver and passenger sit low, giving the driving position a sporty feel that offers plenty of headroom and legroom. The seats are thick, comfortable, and supportive--and comfortable even after several hours behind the wheel. The CT is quiet too, with virtually no wind or road noise at speed. It felt even quieter than other luxury compacts, let down only by the remarkable amount of engine noise produced by hard acceleration. Lift off, and it settles back down to its usual hush.
The cockpit is well designed for stowing odds and ends, especially for a car of this age. The shallow tray that fits smartphones is right next to a power plug and a USB input, and other little cubbies, trays, and bins are plentiful. Rear-seat passengers get less, though, including a complete lack of cupholders--one hint that the CT wasn't designed primarily for North American buyers.
The cabin materials are rich and soothing--mostly--but there are some dissonant details. The pendant-style parking brake carried over from lesser Toyotas conveys a Seventies feeling, and the hollow-feeling, cheap-looking plastics on the center console just aren't up to the luxury level of the rest of the interior. As for Remote Touch, the Lexus-standard mouse-like controller on the console that moves a cursor on the center display screen, some users will adapt to it easily and others will curse it and wish for a touchscreen or a controller with some tactile feedback.