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Any difference between 2001/2002 VQ35DE engines?

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Hey all,


I was wondering - is there *any* difference at all between the 2001 & 2002 VQ35DE engines? The reason I'm asking is this: my 2001 manual says that premium fuel is required. If you take a look at a 2002 manual, it tells you "for maximum vehicle performance, use premium gasoline. however, if premium is not available, 87 octane can be used".


So I'm wondering if there is any difference in the timing setup, sensors, tuning etc between 2001 & 2002 model years that would allow you to put "required" in one and "recommended" in the other. Reason I'm asking is that I'd like to drive this vehicle more - actually I'd like to make it my daily driver - but I have a long commute and the worse gas mileage (approx 10mpg less than my other car) coupled with the premium, ends up costing significantly more. If I could dump the premium, it would be more competitive in cost. On the other hand, I don't want to end up with CEL problems et al by using 87.


Thoughts? Anyone struck a happy medium on 89 instead?

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  • 1 month later...

I only use regular in my 01 with the VQ, but I usually fill up a whole tank of super premium once every other month or so, just to help burn off any deposits that might be left over.


Do you notice any difference in gas mileage with the regular?

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There is a difference in the valve train. The 2001 uses shims for adjusting valve clearance while the 2002's and later use bucket style. Don't ask how I know.


When I had my 2002, it ran much better on premium fuel, better power with no hit on fuel economy.





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