Although Lexus's big news at this year's SEMA show is the debut of its all-new GS350 F Sport, the automaker is also using the aftermarket event to show off tricked out versions of several other models, including its hybrid CT200h hatchback. Designed by aftermarket tuner Five Axis, the modified CT200h includes major interior and exterior changes along with several crucial upgrades designed to boost performance.
On the outside, the Five Axis CT200h trades its conservative hybrid design for aggressive new styling. A full body kit is immediately recognizable and features a new front fascia, a purposeful rear bumper with a race car-style diffuser, black-painted wheels, lowered ride height and shaved door handles. Also included are custom black accents and a unique "Dark Passage" paint scheme, which was created specifically by Five Axis for the CT200h.
Interior modifications to the Five Axis CT200h aren't as comprehensive, but they're just as striking. The hatchback's typical Lexus leather upholstery is gone, replaced instead by bright orange alcantara that also appears on the CT's interior door panels. A touchscreen center console with a control wheel is also added, giving tech savvy drivers yet another toy in the CT200h's already advanced cabin.
But to most SEMA show followers, the most important modifications are under the skin. While Five Axis hasn't touched the CT200h's environmentally friendly 1.8-liter hybrid four-cylinder engine, the aftermarket tuner did add a Stop Tech high-performance brake kit for improved stopping power and a TEIN flex coilover suspension system designed to increase stability under hard cornering.
Like most SEMA show cars, the Five Axis CT200h is just a one-off concept - not unlike the tuning company's GS350 F Sport build, which includes similar performance upgrades and a wide body kit. But for young buyers interested in aftermarket modifications, the hatchback certainly showcases a world of potential.
See more coverage of the 2011 SEMA Auto Show.
|JEFFREY ARCHER is fortunate to have turned a passion for cars into a career. His wide-ranging automotive experience includes work for automakers and dealers in addition to covering the news. When not writing, he spends his time searching for unique cars on AutoTrader.com.|