Toyota has a well-earned reputation for building some of the best and most reliable engines used in the global automotive market. As long as you do not abuse them, it is possible to help your Toyota’s motor to stay running for hundreds of thousands of miles.
Although Toyota has a reputation for producing very strong motors, some engines have proven to be among the very best. Some have shown themselves to be among the very worst. The following gives you a closer look at the most and least reliable Toyota engines. Check out https://reman-engine.com/remanufactured-engines/toyota for more information on Toyota engines for sale.
Two of the Best Toyota Engines
Narrowing the list of the most reliable Toyota engines requires you to overlook many excellent motors. That is what you call a “good dilemma” if you are among those who own a Toyota with a high-quality engine. The following are two of the best and most reliable Toyota engines ever built.
The 4.0-liter V6 1GR-FE engine is a workhorse motor that has virtually no commonly reported problems from its owners. It primarily powers SUVs and pickups with rear-wheel drive and 4X4 drivetrains.
The 1GR-FE first powered 2002 4Runner and the Land Cruiser Prado. It has four valves per cylinder and aluminum heads and an aluminum engine block. Toyota improved it with variable valve timing in 2009 and now uses the motor in the:
- 4Runner, Land Cruiser, and FJ Cruiser.
- Tacoma and Tundra pickups.
- Lexus GX 400.
The 1GR-FE produces between 236 and 270 horsepower and between 270 and 278 pound-feet of torque at the crank. The power numbers are relatively low for a 4.0-liter motor, but that helps to give the engine a lot more service life and greater reliability.
The 2.4-liter 22R-E is the motor that helped to give Toyota a reputation for producing durable and reliable pickups. The 22R-E first appeared in 1982 as an option for Toyota 4Runners and pickups. Toyota continued to offer the engine and an option on pickups and SUVs through 1995.
The inline-four motor produced about 116 horsepower and 140 pound-feet of torque that worked well in Toyotas light trucks and SUVs. The engine is exceptionally reliable and the final version of the 22R engine that powered many Toyota models since 1981. The 22R-E improved upon it with electronic fuel injection.
The Worst Toyota Engine
Toyota is the world’s largest automaker and sells more models than any other. It has a strong reputation for building very reliable vehicles of all types. But even a highly successful automaker like Toyota is going to have some duds. One of those is the 3VZ-E motor.
The 3VZ-E is a 3.0-liter V6 that Toyota used from 1988 to 1995 in the 4Runner and Toyota Pickup. It also powered the T100 pickup from 1992 to 1994.
The motor was underpowered and only produced 150 horsepower and 180 pound-feet of torque. Although capable of good fuel economy, it offered dogged performance with only a 9.0:1 compression ratio.
The engine has a cast-iron block, aluminum head, and two valves per cylinder. Ultimately, the mating of an aluminum head to a cast-iron engine block caused a lot of problems. The aluminum heads could warp due to heat from the engine block and leak oil. The head gaskets likewise had problems containing the leaking oil.
Why Timing Chains Matter
Timing chains are very important pieces of equipment that virtually all internal combustion engines contain. Air needs to get into the combustion chamber while exhaust needs to get out. Some cylinders will take air in at the same time as others are letting exhaust get out.
Valves are what enable the engine to breathe in new air and exhale the exhaust. The timing chain ensures the inlet and exhaust valves open and closes at the right time. So if you have problems with the timing chain, you have problems with the engine.
There are two types of timing chains used in the auto industry. One is a metal chain, which has been used since timing chains were first created. The other is a rubber compound that is durable but not as much as a metal timing chain.
The vast majority of Toyota engines are equipped with metal timing chains. They could last for 200,000 miles or more. Some Toyota engines have been equipped with rubber timing chains, which have about half the service life of metal timing chains.
Whether you have metal or rubber timing chains, you need to apply some preventive maintenance to keep the engine in top shape. Replacing the timing chains per the factory recommended schedules for your vehicles helps to keep the running well.