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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

Have a couple questions that google hasn't been much help on.

On the gen 3 camrys, was the 1994 v6 the only engine with an aluminum engine block? If so, was it both the coupe and sedan version?

I've been led to believe based on a cartalk forum that Lexus's and some newer model Toyotas have aluminum engine blocks and that this is generally a good thing. In your guy's expert opinions what are some pros and cons?

Thanks,
 

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'94-onward V6's have aluminum blocks, regardless of body type; coupe, sedan, or wagon. Car engine blocks are nearly exclusively aluminum these days; I can't think of a single example of an iron block, but there probably is.

Pros for aluminum:
Steel is 2.8X denser, so it's heavier than aluminum if the same volume of material is used. (See cons below)
Thermal expansion matches the aluminum heads typically used, so less problematic for head gaskets.
Thermal conductivity of aluminum is about 5X higher than steel, so it's less prone to having hot spots.

Cons for aluminum blocks:
Must use a sleeve in the bore; iron doesn't require one.
More expensive than steel by weight.
Has a lower yield strength, so where req'd for strength, more material must be used.
Has a lower stiffness modulus, so where req'd for stiffness, more material must be used.

...I'm probably forgetting some.
 

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Judging how much cars use all aluminum blocks, it can't be a bad thing.

As mention above, the 94+ 1MZFE (MZ family) was all aluminum. The 5SFE was iron up until the transition for the 2AZ which was all aluminum. Aluminum doesn't hold up as well to overheating vs iron...but you really shouldn't let your car run that hot anyhow.

For an everyday driver, there should be no reason why iron blocks is used. Mostly for the lighter engine = light car = more MPG's. Must be at lease 15+ years since Toyota used iron blocks in their passenger cars.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the good info!

Okay, so follow up question BMR, based on the "more material must be used" do you have any idea how much lighter an aluminum block typically is? Is it significant?

Then, towards Kingdom's points, the 2AZ transition happened in 2002 based on Wikipedia. So the 5SFE, was used up til 2002 and it has an iron block?

Now, can I also ask both of you super-senior members, which do prefer the v6 or the i4? I imagine many threads have covered this, but if you don't mind a brief answer based on personal experience that'd be much appreciated.

My wife and I have a 1996 2.2L camry with 226k. When we consider replacements we're interested in the difference between the two engines. I'm curious if they get the same gas mileage, serviceability (we like to DIY), and major known issues plus whatever else you may like or dislike about the car.

Any help would be much appreciated,
 

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Okay, so follow up question BMR, based on the "more material must be used" do you have any idea how much lighter an aluminum block typically is? Is it significant?
I've read it's about 80 lbs. That's comparing the '92-'93 3VZ-FE iron block to the '94+ 1MZ-FE aluminum block. Don't know if that's an accurate number.

Now, can I also ask both of you super-senior members, which do prefer the v6 or the i4? I imagine many threads have covered this, but if you don't mind a brief answer based on personal experience that'd be much appreciated.
I've never owned an I4. But I did test drive both engines before I bought my '92. The V6 is a lot smoother, and you don't have to thrash it as much to accelerate briskly.

My wife and I have a 1996 2.2L camry with 226k. When we consider replacements we're interested in the difference between the two engines. I'm curious if they get the same gas mileage, serviceability (we like to DIY), and major known issues plus whatever else you may like or dislike about the car.
Some things are more difficult to service on the V6. Spark plugs for example. But those aren't done very often, so I wouldn't weight that too heavily. And the valve cover gaskets are pain on the V6. But again, that's something that'll need doing maybe once in its lifetime?

Some like to point out maintenance costs are higher, but it's not much IMHO. 6 spark plugs Vs 4, so $20 more. Bigger tires = more $. But again, when you figure how often that expenditure occurs, it's nothing.

Biggest negative is the V6's fuel mileage.

That's my 2 cents.
 

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Then, towards Kingdom's points, the 2AZ transition happened in 2002 based on Wikipedia. So the 5SFE, was used up til 2002 and it has an iron block?
Yep. 5SFE was the last 4 cylinder engine used in the Camry that was an Iron block w/ alloy head. 2002+ (Gen5 Camry) used the new 2AZ engine. What was interesting is that the 2001 Camry was the only one with a MLS Headgasket for the 5SFE from what I've heard here.

Now, can I also ask both of you super-senior members, which do prefer the v6 or the i4? I imagine many threads have covered this, but if you don't mind a brief answer based on personal experience that'd be much appreciated.
I've driven and work on these Camry. The 1MZFE is a solid engine. It is used in many Toyota/Lexus line up and it clearly show why. Power band is very smooth and it's very refine for its time. Besides the regular stuff that goes wrong with any engine (i.e. valve cover gaskets, hoses, etc), it's essentially bullet proof.

People have reported sludging issue with both engines, but I personally had none with all the cars I've worked on. Regular oil changes are the key here.

My mom and dad has a 2001/2000 Camry with the 5SFE. Friend's sister has a 1997 5SFE. Other friends have several 1MZ based Camry/Avalon. I have a 1998 V6 and a 2004 V6. Engine bay space wise is noticeably less in the 2004. Compare the Gen4 engine bay for the V6 and I4 is noticeably more cramp but still serviceable. The 1MZFE sounds better and runs smoother. The 5SFE is relatively good but you'll notice the grumbling noise and it's a little more rough sounding. I've also noticed when the 5SFE gets noisy, it might be about time to do the timing belt and associated items. The 5SFE also requires a bit more preparing when merging and coming from a stop then it's larger V6.
DIY, the 5SFE wins hands down. Valve cover job + PCV that takes maybe an hour in the 5SFE will take a few hours and some different extension and slightly more tools (things you should have anyhow) in the 1MZFE. It doesn't mean the 1MZFE is not a serviceable engine, but it does require more dismantling things and thought process to get to certain stuff. For example, the 5SFE is an EZ oil change, but the 1MZ requires a little more thought. Oil filter is located in a kind of tight location, wouldn't recommend doing it when the engine is hot for those not used to it (hot manifold in the way!)
Oh yea, the rear motor mount for the 1MZFE is a major PITA if you do happen to replace it. Mines is done for and I'm pushing it off still...



My wife and I have a 1996 2.2L camry with 226k. When we consider replacements we're interested in the difference between the two engines. I'm curious if they get the same gas mileage, serviceability (we like to DIY), and major known issues plus whatever else you may like or dislike about the car.

Any help would be much appreciated,
You'll tend to find more 1MZFE engine based vehicles IMO ... at lease over here for parts. the V6 was used in many platforms such as the Camry, Avalon, ES300, Sienna, Highlander...think missing a few. The only big issue I find with the 1MZFE is since the engine is a harder DIY, people neglect to do repairs on it such as a leaky power steering hose, valve covers, and PCV valves.

For me for what it is worth, I'm getting about 27MPG in my 2004 SE 5SPD MT (2azfe) Camry versus about 22-23MPG in my 2004 XLE V6 5SPD AT. Not sure how much you're gas miles will be, but my friend who is a light foot and avoids traffic in her 1995 LE V6 Camry w/ 314K miles gets around 24-25MPG.

If your looking for a Gen3/4 Camry, either engine is a good one (although the 92-93 3VZ might be harder to find parts). Gen5 Camry, I would choose the V6 for less potential long run issues that are expensive to repair (i.e. headbolt stripping in the 2AZ).



Some thread I had about the V6 I posted a while back.

http://www.toyotanation.com/forum/1...58-love-hate-relationship-power-steering.html

http://www.toyotanation.com/forum/1...ook-peak-under-valve-covers-es300-2002-a.html

http://www.toyotanation.com/forum/1...-did-my-ps-high-pressure-hose-my-1998-v6.html




EDIT: I don't think I answered your question, but when I look at a Gen3/4 Camry for myself, engine choice is not a worry to me and I like both engines and I feel I don't have to worry about it prolong all maintenance is done to it.
 

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A question for Kingdom and a few comments for the OP, jacobc.

Kingdom, you mentioned the engine mount....this is a different mount but since you know these things....I noticed the rubber is cracked inside the engine stability arm above the timing belt. Is there any reason to just replace that part or is that a waste if I don't know the status of other points?

jacobc, I have the 2000 V6 in a Solara. I get about 24-25MPG doing mostly highway driving....it's an automatic. I think they used the same engine (?) in the 1998 Tacoma....I get about 18MPG in it...4WD standard....ARGH! Changing the back three plugs is a little tricky but quite doable for a DYIer. Changing the back cam cover gasket is definitely a real pain since you have to remove the intake manifold. If you have to change the back cam cover gasket, try to schedule that job along with a timing belt and water pump (since you will probably take off the back timing belt cover) replacement...and do the plugs at the same time. It makes for a longer job but all those parts are easier to access at that time. I also have had no trouble with the reported sludging issue and I live in a very humid area. I change oil at the 5,000-mile interval so don't feel like you have to change at the 3,000 interval to be safe. 410,000 miles and still on the original engine/transmission.
 

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One more thing I'd add... Both engines are capable of going 300k+ miles given good maintenance. Take a look at the top 50 high milers here. You'll see a good mix of both engines. A little heavier on the I4, but I think the ratio matches what Toyota sold... A little higher sales volume for the I4.
 

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A question for Kingdom and a few comments for the OP, jacobc.

Kingdom, you mentioned the engine mount....this is a different mount but since you know these things....I noticed the rubber is cracked inside the engine stability arm above the timing belt. Is there any reason to just replace that part or is that a waste if I don't know the status of other points?

jacobc, I have the 2000 V6 in a Solara. I get about 24-25MPG doing mostly highway driving....it's an automatic. I think they used the same engine (?) in the 1998 Tacoma....I get about 18MPG in it...4WD standard....ARGH! Changing the back three plugs is a little tricky but quite doable for a DYIer. Changing the back cam cover gasket is definitely a real pain since you have to remove the intake manifold. If you have to change the back cam cover gasket, try to schedule that job along with a timing belt and water pump (since you will probably take off the back timing belt cover) replacement...and do the plugs at the same time. It makes for a longer job but all those parts are easier to access at that time. I also have had no trouble with the reported sludging issue and I live in a very humid area. I change oil at the 5,000-mile interval so don't feel like you have to change at the 3,000 interval to be safe. 410,000 miles and still on the original engine/transmission.
The dog bone mount is very cheap if you go aftermarket. I don't think there is a big difference vs after market to genuine for this mount. The other mount (Front, rear, and transmission), I'd be more concern.

If the after market dog bone is looking very stressed after install or you can see stress wears on the new mount, it could be a good possible chance that your front/rear are also bad.
 

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Ford's 1.0L 3-cyl turbo charged EcoBoost engine have a cast iron block :D
HA!!!... I just knew someone would come up with an exception! :lol:

I suspect on a little dinky motor like that, the weight savings with an aluminum block are negligible, making it not worth the cost difference?
 

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Haha, if you look at VW, lots of cast iron blocks. Even the VR6 engines are cast iron. German engineers love cast iron?

HA!!!... I just knew someone would come up with an exception! :lol:

I suspect on a little dinky motor like that, the weight savings with an aluminum block are negligible, making it not worth the cost difference?
 

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HA!!!... I just knew someone would come up with an exception! :lol:

I suspect on a little dinky motor like that, the weight savings with an aluminum block are negligible, making it not worth the cost difference?
It was a design choice, since it's stronger and doesn't require a liner in the cylinder, they can make the walls thinner (6mm) to speed up the warm up time by 50% they claim, for improved fuel economy from my understanding.

That little 3cyl produces 123 hp :grin:
 

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It was a design choice, since it's stronger and doesn't require a liner in the cylinder, they can make the walls thinner (6mm) to speed up the warm up time by 50% they claim, for improved fuel economy from my understanding.

That little 3cyl produces 123 hp :grin:

I will give Ford credit to pump out that much power on a small engine. I'm just really curious on the longevity of these engines though and the serviceability of these. The again, most modern cars are consider (imo) disposable.
 
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