Toyota's 3.5-liter V6 gasoline engine for transverse mounting was introduced in 2004. The 2GR-FE replaced the previous 1MZ-FE V6 and legendary inline six 2JZ engines. The new engine very soon became a popular choice for mass-produced Toyota's vehicle such as Toyota Camry, Toyota Rav4, and Highlander. The 2GR features the widespread application not only in Toyota's models but also in Lexus cars with sign 350 (Lexus IS 350, GS 350, RX 350, and etc). By the way, the Lotus Evora S and Exige S were equipped exactly with that engine.
Like the 1GR-FE, the 2GR-FE has an open-deck type cast aluminum alloy cylinder block with spiny-type cast iron cylinder liners (sleeves). The V-angle between cylinder banks is 60 degrees. The liners are cast into the block material. The engine has a forged steel crankshaft with five counterweights and forged connecting rods. The aluminum alloy pistons have resin-coated skirts to reduce friction. The engine block is equipped with oil jets which spray oil on the pistons and reduce their temperature.
Each cylinder head is a three-piece unit: the cylinder head itself, the camshaft housing, and the valve cover. All components are made of aluminum alloy. There are steel-laminate type head gaskets between cylinder banks and heads. The engine has double overhead chain-driven camshafts (the intake and exhaust camshafts for both cylinder banks). The primary timing chain drives the intake camshafts only; the exhaust camshafts are driven by intake camshafts via secondary chains. The valve timing is equipped with Toyota's Dual VVT-i system. The valves are actuated via roller rocker arms. The valve clearance is automatically adjusted via hydraulic lash adjusters (tappets).
The 2GR engine has a variable geometry intake manifold made of plastic. The Toyota's ACIS varies the length of the intake manifold according to engine rpm by open and closes the intake air control valve. The throttle valve is electronically controlled by ETCS-I system (Electronic Throttle Control System - intelligent). The acceleration pedal doesn't have a physical connection with the throttle body, just position sensor, and wires. The engine got an L-type sequential fuel injection system and Toyota's DIS ignition. Each spark plug has an individual ignition coil integrated into the spark plug cap. The exhausts gases go out through the stainless-steel exhaust manifolds (headers) and a three-way catalytic converter on both sides.
The 2GR-FSE Engine
The 2GR-FSE engine is used mostly in Lexus and Japanese domestic vehicles. That version features Toyota's D-4S twin injection system (direct and port fuel injection). The combination of the direct injection and conventional port injection requires separate low- and high-pressure fuel systems. The engine also got new cylinder heads with high-pressure direct fuel injectors positioned at the outer side of the intake valves. The pistons have redesigned shape and are made of a hypereutectic aluminum alloy to withstand high loads. Due to the ability to provide better cooling of air-fuel mixture by direct fuel injection into the combustion chamber, the compression ratio was increased up to 11.8:1. Like 2GR-FE, the engine is equipped with Toyota's ETCS-I, ACIS, and DIS systems.
The 2GR-FKS Engine
The 2GR-FKS is the newest 3.5-liter V6 engine among all 2GR versions. It was first introduced in 2015 as the replacement for the 2GR-FSE in Lexus cars. But a few years later, this engine became a standard V6 engine for the Toyota Camry and Highlander. The new engine is nothing but the evolution of the 2GR-FSE.
The engine kept the architecture and received the last Toyota's advanced technologies in the engine development. The 2GR-FKS can switch from Otto cycle to an Atkinson cycle operation for a better fuel economy. That is achieved by using the VVT-iW on the intake camshafts (Variable Valve Timing - Intelligent Wide). The engine still uses a variable exhaust valve timing (VVT-i). The engine was also equipped with the coil-on-plug ignition system DIS, ETCS-I, and ACIS. Like the 2GR-FSE, the 2GR-FKS has a combined direct injection and port fuel injection (Toyota's D-4S). The significant changes are observed in the exhaust system. Now, the exhaust manifolds are integrated into the cylinder heads and the EGR circuit is cooled.
Kamigo Plant;Shimoyama Plant;Toyota Motor Manufacturing Alabama;Toyota Motor Manufacturing Kentucky
Cylinder block material
Cylinder head material
Sequential fuel injection;Direct injection + port injection
Number of cylinders
Valves per cylinder
94.0 mm (3.7 in)
83.0 mm (3.27 in)
3,456 (210.8 cu in)
Type of internal combustion engine
Four-stroke, naturally aspirated
10.8:1 - 2GR-FE;11.8:1 - 2GR-FSE/FKS
249-360 hp (183-265 kW)/6,000-6,600
Torque, lb ft
234-367 lb-ft (317-498 Nm)/3,200-4,800
360 lbs (163 kg)
Engine oil weight
Engine oil capacity, liter
Oil change interval, mile
6,000 (10,000 km) or 12 month
Toyota Camry, Toyota RAV4, Toyota Highlander, Toyota Tacoma, Toyota Alphard, Toyota Aurion, Toyota Harrier, Toyota Mark X, Toyota Mark X Zio, Toyota Sienna, Toyota Venza, Toyota Crown, Toyota Estima/Previa, Toyota Avalon, Lexus GS 350, Lexus GS 450h, Lexus IS 350, Lexus ES 350, Lexus RX 350, Lexus RX 450h, Lotus Evora S/GTE, Lotus Exige S, Bolwell Nagari 300
2GR-FE/FSE/FKS Engine Problems and Reliability
Toyota conducted a recall campaign for cars with 2GR-FE and 2GR-FSE produced until 2010. The reason for that became a problem with an oil leak from the rubber hose which feeds the VVT-i lubrication system. The manufacturer replaced that rubber part by a metal pipe.
If the 2GR engine has a damaged cylinder wall surface, the entire cylinder block has to be replaced. The thin walls of the cylinder liners make the engine impossible to bore the block. The liners itself are cast into the aluminum engine block.
The 2GR-FSE engine features the overheating of the fifth cylinder. That is caused by the design flaw. The problem leads to high oil consumption at first and scratches appearance on cylinder wall later. If you read above, now you know the expensive end of that story.
The all GR family has a common problem with unreliable water pump and ignition coils. In some cases, they don't last longer than 30-50k miles, and that is very annoying. The 2GR-FE has longevity about 200,000 miles (300,000 km). The 2GR-FSE and 2GR-FKS engines are more technologically advanced, powerful, and fuel efficient but less reliable.
2GR-FXE. The 2GR-FXE engine features the Atkinson cycle. It was based on the 2GR-FE and offered in the hybrid Lexus GS 450h, RX 450h, and Toyota Highlander Hybrid form 2010 to 2015. That version uses VVT-i, cooled EGR system and also the D-4S (multi-port and direct injection) in the Lexus GS 450h. The power output witout D-4S is 245 hp (183 kW), with D-4S - 292 hp (218 kW).
2GR-FXS. That is a special version of the 2GR-FKS used in hybrid vehicle applications sins 2015. The power range is 308-338 hp (230-252 kW). The engine is offered in the Lexus GS 450h, RX 450h, and Toyota Highlander Hybrid.
2GR-FZE. The engine is a supercharged version of the 2GR-FE used in the Lotus Exige S, Lotus Evora S/GTE, and the TRD Aurion. The supercharged 2GR-FE was fitted with the belt-driven Eaton TVS (Twin Vortices System) four-lobe supercharger. Lotus cars were equipped with a supercharged 2GR-FSE engine by the Harrop HTV 1320 supercharger.
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