Edmunds Answers



  • zaken1 09/15/10 2:38 am PST

    Yes, the 2011 Lexus ES 350 with the 3.5 liter V-6 now recommends regular fuel. None of the other Lexus models that I checked have changed their fuel recommendation. The Lexus ES350 has always used essentially the same motor as the Toyota Camry and Avalon. The Camry and Avalon have always recommended regular fuel; but savvy owners have found that the Camry and Avalon get better fuel economy and have better performance when using premium. I believe the reason that Toyota originally required premium fuel in the Lexus ES350 is that they made an executive decision to set the engine controls for greater performance in the Lexus version than they did in the Camry version of that motor; and that required always using premuim fuel in the Lexus. But since more and more drivers are now opting to use regular fuel; I believe Lexus decided to retune their lowest priced model for regular fuel; in order to match the current fuel preferences of most ES350 owners. Those owners who prefer optimal performance can still gain that by using premium fuel; but it just is no longer mandatory in the ES350. And the difference in performance between the 2010 motor with premium fuel calibrations; and the 2011 motor with regular fuel calibrations is so slight as to be barely noticeable; when both motors use premium.


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