The Toyota UZ Series

The UZ Series is a quad-camshaft, 32-valve V8 engine series used in sport utility and luxury vehicles from Toyota and Lexus. The engine family was first introduced in 1989 in the Lexus LS 400 and has since appeared in several of the company's vehicles. The UZ Series has largely been replaced by the UR Series.

3UZ-FE Engine



The 1UZ-FE appeared in 1989 in the Lexus LS400, in 1991 in the SC 400, and in 1992 in the GS 400. All three vehicles saw it replaced in 2001. This large engine also appeared in the one-off Toyota MR2 Le Mans race car.

The 1UZ-FE is a 4.0-liter alloy engine designed to be oversquare. Several things made this engine highly reliable, including the quad camshaft design, all belt-driven, and its six-bolt main bearings. The engine was based on CART/IRL automotive racing designs and was originally meant for Toyota's GT500 vehicles. Through to 1995, the engine had a 10:1 compression ratio and 256 horsepower output. In 1995, revisions were made to lighten some components while compression was raised to 10.4:1, which boosted power output to 261 horsepower. In 1997, variable valve timing, intelligent (VVT-i) was added and compression was again raised, this time to 10.5:1, which together boosted horsepower to 290 and torque to 300 lb-ft. This iteration won it a Ward's 10 Best Engines listing from 1998 to 2000.

  • Firing Order: 1-8-4-3-6-5-7-2
  • Spark Gap: 0.042 in


A larger 4.7-liter V8, this iteration is a cast iron rather than aluminum block. It was made in Alabama to suit American vehicles and appeared in the 2003-2004 Lexus GX 470, 1998-2005 LX 470, 1998-2005 Land Cruiser, 2003-2004 4Runner, 2000-2004 Tundra, and 2001-2004 Sequoia. A bolt-on supercharger kit from Toyota Rading Development (TRD) was available as well. A variant with VVT-i and electronic throttle control appeared in 2005. That was put on vehicles like the 2005-2009 4Runner, 2006-2011 Land Cruiser, 2005-2006 Tundra, and the 2005-2009 Sequoia.

  • Firing Order: 1-8-4-3-6-5-7-2
  • Spark Gap: 0.044 in


This 4.4-liter entry into this series was built only in Japan, but a few were imported to the U.S. for use in racing, specifically GT, mostly as privateer offerings. The Super GT series of Toyota Supra GT500 and Lexus SC 430 GT500 cars can accept this engine. The engine was in some official Toyota race cars, mostly in Asia and Europe, through to 2009, outputting an impressive 500 horsepower.

To learn about other Toyota engines, see our comprehensive list here.