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Lexus using 87 octane, spoke to tech.

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So I want to buy a Lexus RX 350.  The 2012 model year was tuned to run on 87 octane gas. The cost difference between 87 octane and 93 is at least $5,000 over 300,000 miles. Which I run high miles on my vehicles. About to break 300K on my 01 jeep xj.

So I was gonna get a 2012 because it can handle a different octane. But I don't like the color choice in 2012. 

So I called a TECH at the dealer.

The Tech guy in the dealer service center said all models should use 93 octane except once in a while its ok to use 87 if nothing else is available. I said but 2012 was tuned to run on 87 octane, he said no it wasn't and to use 93 octane.

All kinds of web information says the 2012 was re-tuned to run 87 octane.

I want to run 87 octane for 300,000 miles.

Will this hurt anything and can I run 87 octane in other years as well. Once this is figured out I'm ready to buy one.


Need your thoughts.

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  • 1 month later...

i can tell you according to several ase certified techs i have spoken to. all claim it should have premium fuel. the 87 octane thing is pure marketing/sales tactic. re; your question on using 87 octane it wont really hurt it. but it is not going to run like it has the potential too.

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I would agree with lexus114 with the statement of not running like it has the potential to. With a higher octane fuel you will achieve a smoother running engine and enhanced efficiency (especially if you run a quality brand of fuel) in which case the engine should return more miles per gallon so maybe this is the cost saving incentive and way to go? 

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  • 8 months later...

I ran our 2015 RX350 with non ethanol 91 premium for the first 5 tanks full. At the dealer while in for oil change service I mentioned it and asked if I could use regular 87. The tech said I likely would not notice any difference in performance or fuel economy. We were getting just under 18 MPGs with the premium. We drove from NY to Florida and back on the regular 87 and we still got just under 18 MPGs for the entire trip. I think if I was at the drag strip I might see some performance difference but not so much in normal driving conditions. I own a 2011 Toyota Tacoma with a V-6 engine and a 2016 Toyota 4 Runner Limited also with a V-6 engine and both run fine on 87 octane with the 10% e-fuel. Is there some major difference between these 3 Toyota V-6 engines?


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  • 2 weeks later...

We usually try to use "ethanol-free" gas, but it's hard to find, and expensive.  Trust me, your RX will run just fine on 87 octane gas, but I would be more concerned about the dismal mileage numbers you're getting.  Our 2015 gets 24-26 at 65-75 mph.

BTW- the V6 in the RX is the same V6 in the Camry & the Highlander, but it's not the same as the truck engines.

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  • 5 years later...

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