What Do Toyota Engine Codes Mean?

Since it began around the turn of the century, Toyota has produced many engines. Modern Toyota engines, such as those we will be focusing on here (1988 to present) are designated by a coded naming system. Toyota uses this system to denote what technologies are on the engine and to differentiate between the same engine, with slight modifications, being used in different markets.

The coding system works simply: the first numeric character(s) represent the engine block's generation, the next one or two letters are the engine family, and the suffix, separated by a dash, lists the engine's features. For example, a 2GR-FE engine (used in the Avalon, RX 350 and Highlander) is a second-generation (2) engine in the GR-series featuring an economy narrow-angle valve direct overhead cam (F) with electronic fuel injection (E).

The suffixes for Toyota engine naming are as follows:

  • A - Valvematic variable lift intake head
  • B - Twin SU-style side-draft carburetors (After 2000, 'B' indicates capability for E85 Ethanol)
  • C - Carburated / California Emissions Controlled
  • D - Twin Downdraft carburetors
  • E - Electronic Fuel injection
  • F - Economy narrow-angle valve DOHC
  • G - Performance wide-angle valve DOHC
  • H - High compression, High pressure charged
  • I - Single-point fuel injection
  • J - Autochoke in early models, unknown pollution control later
  • L - Transverse
  • M - Philippines' market
  • N - CNG fuel
  • P - LPG fuel
  • R - Low Compression (uses 87 and below octane fuel)
  • S - Swirl intake
  • SE - D-4 Gasoline Direct Injection
  • T - Turbocharged
  • U - Japan-spec emissions w/ catalytic converter
  • V - Common Rail Diesel Injection (D-4D)
  • X - Atkinson cycle (most-used on hybrids)
  • Z - Supercharged