20R, 21R, 22R engines.
A lot of this data was collated from discussions on the Classic-Celica group.
The common settings were copied from the Haynes "Celica 1971 thru 1985 RWD" manual -
and from the Toyota Manual "21R, 22R Engines - Repair Manual" Pub No.36056E;.
20R 2200cc with carburetor
21R-U 2000cc with carburetor and Japanese pollution control
21R-C 2000cc with carburetor and international pollution control
22R 2400cc with carburetor
22R-E 2400cc with EFI
2400cc with EFI with even more pollution control
2400cc with EFI and Japanese pollution control
2400cc with EFI and turbo (low compression, low boost for low HP but high torque
for small trucks)
These engines are essentially identical apart from the width of the pistons.
All major parts will interchange except the pistons and the block.
These engines are an overhead cam, overhead valve design with 4 inline cylinders.
The block is cast iron and the cylinder head is alloy.
There are no twincam versions and twincam heads from other engines do not fit.
All versions can use unleaded fuel because all alloy heads have hardened valve seats.
Some external parts are interchangeable with other R series engines.
Most cars with any R series engine can accept these engines (beware of extra height).
Most of these engines use a single Toyota downdraft carburetor.
The 22R-E/EC/EU/TE had EFI.
There were 2 versions of the 22R - the early tall deck and the later short deck.
The short deck has a slightly lower block than the tall deck.
The short deck uses a 2 less links in the timing chain.
I have been told that the 96 link single row chain can be upgraded to a double row by using a
modified early 22R timing cover, oil pump, drive spline.
Block Piston Timing Air
Engine Years cc Bore Stroke chamber O2
height type chain injection
20R 75-80 2189 88.5 89.0mm tall ? ? 98 double 98 no
21R 1972 84.0 89.0mm tall ? ? 98 double ? ?
22R 81-82 2366 92.0 89.0mm tall ? ? 98 double no ?
22R 83-84 2366 92.0 89.0mm tall dome open 98 single no ?
22R 85- 2366 92.0 89.0mm short flat small 96 single no ?
The 20R exhaust manifold had air injection that mounted on the manifold top and no oxygen
The 22R does not and some do and dont have an oxygen sensor mount.
The 20R exhuast manifold outlet has a single outlet into the exhuast pipe.
The 22R exhaust manifold had dual outlet.
The 20R exhaust manifold usually had 1 lower center mount stud.
The 22R exhaust manifold usually had 2 lower center mount studs.
Some early 22R exhaust manifolds had single lower center stud hole.
Some 22R exhaust manifolds had both configs of holes and had 3 holes.
Aftermarket exhuast manifolds usually fit all 20R/21R/22R by having all possible holes.
Depending on the country and year, some engines had points and some had electronic
You can upgrade to electronic ignition by using the distributor internals from any R or T
series engine with EI.
You also need the corresponding ignitor module.
Note: early model EI has an external ignitor bolted to the coil and later model EI has the
ignitor inside the distributor.
Both types can be used on any R or T series engine.
The 21R engine wasn't sold new in America but is easy to find at engine importers.
In most cases you will need to swap the oil pan for a 20R or 22R oil pan so that the sump
clears the crossmember.
The 20R was only sold in America - most other countries used the 18R until 1981.
In Australia the 21R-C replaced the 18R-C in 1981 and was replaced by the S series engines
In Australia the 22R-E was used in top end Celicas and Coronas for mid 1984 to mid 1985
only (short deck).
There are many variations of pollution control on these engines.
These include various PCV's, air injection pumps, recirculating exhaust gases and different
The 20R head has smaller combustion chambers than the 22R.
Using a 20R head on a 22R tall deck block will raise the compression ration.
This will allow you to tune the engine to give greater power.
The 22R block will fit anywhere a 20R block used to be, so this is a recommended upgrade
for both 20R and 22R owners.
I suspect that a 21R on a 22R tall deck block will also raise the compression.
LC Engineering specialise in the 20R/22R and have many performance parts for them.
Bore x Stroke 20R 88.5x89mm
Bore x Stroke 21R 84.0x89mm
Bore x Stroke 22R 92.0x89mm
Inlet valve clearance - hot 0.20mm (0.008")
Exhaust valve clearance - hot 0.30mm (0.012")
Timing 21R-C(Australia) manual 5° BTDC at 600rpm
Timing 21R-C(Australia) auto 5° BTDC at 650rpm
Timing 21R, 21R-C(Sweden) 8° BTDC at 750rpm
Timing 22R 8° BTDC at 950rpm
Firing order 1-3-4-2
Idle speed - manual 800 ± 50 rpm
Idle speed - auto 850 ± 50 rpm
Fast idle speed 21R, 21R-C 2400 rpm
Fast idle speed 22R 2600 rpm
Fast idle speed 2600 ± 200 rpm
Compression 21R - standard 11.0kg/cm² (157psi)
Compression 21R-C - standard 11.5kg/cm² (164psi)
Compression 22R - standard 12.0kg/cm² (171psi)
Compression 21R, 21R-C - minimum 9.0kg/cm² (128psi)
Compression 22R - minimum 9.0kg/cm² (127.8psi)
Compression - max difference between cylinders 1.0kg/cm² (14psi)
Spark plug Champion NY11YC
Spark plug gap 0.8mm (0.032")
Max spark plug lead resistance 25kOhm
Distributor heel gap 0.45mm
Distributor air gap (EI) 0.2-0.4mm (0.008"-0.0168")
Distributor damping spring gap (points) 0.1-0.4mm (0.004"-0.0168")
Distributor heel gap (points) 0.45mm (0.0177")
Dwell angle 52°