Lexus Eco Mode VS Normal Mode – What Is The Difference?

There are different modes designed for cars to give drivers the most convenient and comfortable driving experience.

People like to compare the two functions, and the comparison of Lexus eco mode vs normal mode is one of them.

Lexus eco mode is said to be fuel efficient and save the environment. So is it really better than the normal function, and how are they different? Let’s find out!

What Are They?

lexus eco mode vs normal mode

Normal Mode 

It is the simple driving system that all cars have to optimize the balance of quiet driving, fuel efficiency, and dynamic performance.

The option is preferable and suitable for driving inside the city.

You can change between modes according to your driving conditions. The selected option will be illuminated.

When traveling on the highway, you may want to consider switching to the Sport operating system for quicker and more powerful acceleration.

If you are concerned about fuel consumption while your car operates around the town, turn the economy function on.

Eco Mode  

What is the eco-driving mode? Besides the Normal and Sport, Economy is one of the standard driving modes that Lexus installs on their cars to create a convenient driving experience.

Since it aims to save more fuel and cut down the total cost, the system works by reducing the pedal input, acceleration, and throttle response.

In addition, it also sends less power to the climate control systems.

Does eco mode really work? Yes. Besides improving gas mileage, the function helps retain your vehicle’s condition and remind drivers of safe driving habits.

Lexus Eco Mode Vs Normal Mode – What Is The Difference?

Both modes of Lexus are made to bring drivers a comfortable driving experience and smooth acceleration.

The main difference between eco mode vs. normal mode is the former focus on minimizing gas spending and emissions, thus raising drivers’ eco-conscious relaxing driving mood.

Moderate Throttle Characteristics

The first eco vs. normal difference is:  in the case of aggressive acceleration, the throttle response to the pedal inputs is limited. You can’t freely speed up as you do with the other modes.

The reason for it is to reduce fuel consumption and produce less emissions to the environment.

Control The Air Conditioning System

While activating the saving fuel function, you may notice the cooling and heating system of the vehicle is affected. Your car cooling capability may become lower, for example.

It’s because the system is set with the primary purpose of minimizing the output. However, your car air conditioning system can still produce reasonable coolness and keep the atmosphere dry.

Best Suitable Driving Conditions

Does economy mode save gas? Automakers expect it to achieve this goal successfully, but it’s unsuitable for some situations when you need to accelerate your vehicle.

You can choose other modes, such as normal or sport while driving on the freeway, yet using the economy option is not ideal. Does eco mode save gas on the highway

In this case, you’ll not likely appreciate its function as it will prevent you from harsh speed up and braking.

However, restricting the speed means you can’t do some stuff like run red lights or tailgate, leading to better driving habits.

Plus, you can prevent your vehicle from the risk of wear and tear due to aggressive driving and maintain its best condition and performance.

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Economy Mode?

eco mode vs normal mode


Improve Fuel Economy

Does eco mode really save gas? The first advantage I’ve noticed since I adopted the economy mode is the principal purpose of saving as much fuel as possible.

Normally, with the working system, the engine and transmission output will be throttled back.

In other cases, the system is even improved to gain better efficiency. It involves the adjustment of the fuel and air mixture inside the engine.

Activating the saving fuel button in the right situation helps reduce from 3 to 10% of fuel consumption.

Use With Ease

Turning on and off and altering modes can’t be easier. Cars with eco mode are designed with a special button or a dial selector depending on make and model.

You can press the button to activate the system or turn the dial to change between modes.


Cause Power Loss

Does eco mode save gas? Yes, it does quite a good job.

However, manufacturers usually limit the engine power so your vehicle can gain better fuel efficiency while operating with the economy option.

This factory-made restriction is like two sides of a coin. Imagine you activate the system on the highway; the power limitation is not what you expect while running your car at high speed.

When I want to drive faster, the moment I press on the accelerator seems helpless. I also have some gradual feelings while going out from a stop.

Reduce Torque

Eco-drive mode is not suitable for high-torque performance. For example, when you need to pass a steep incline, your car requires extra torque to ride smoothly.

However, your vehicle can’t produce more torque in this case as it’s restricted for the saving fuel purpose.

If you want to haul heavy loads or off-road, change the system to normal and learn how to increase low-end torque.

How To Switch Between Modes? 

cars with eco mode

Driving modes are designed to fit different driving conditions, and changing between them is easy.

If your Lexus model is from 2013, you can do it by identifying the driving mode select dial (usually located on the center console or left side of the steering wheel) and moving it between options to choose the desired one.

Your car’s instrument panel will display what system it is using now.


Does Driving In Economy Mode Save Gas?

There’s no exact answer as it depends on different factors such as what make or model your vehicle is and what condition your driving is while using the option.

However, you can expect potential fuel savings when operating your car at low speed for a short distance.

In my opinion, you’d better turn the eco button on if you just go around the city. The function may not be as beneficial as Normal and Sport for a long drive on the highway.

Does Economy Mode Affect The Battery?

Yes. Your battery won’t be charged automatically when the saving fuel system is activated.

However, the regenerative braking technology in Lexus’ hybrid models allows the battery to receive power while you hit the brakes.

Thus, the regenerating process happens faster when braking more often in some situations, such as while having a slow drive with economy selection.

Is Eco Function Worth It?

It depends. Driving in eco mode may benefit you when you only travel around the urban areas or make a short trip.

It also helps the fuel economy of some models, such as the GX 460, LC 500, or LX 600.

You may struggle to accelerate for freeway driving as the saving fuel system limits that ability.

If you experience delayed shifting when accelerating in normal mode, make sure you include the transmission fluid in your checklist.

The Bottom Lines 

The debate of Lexus eco mode vs. normal mode always draws lots of attention from drivers as they are the two most popular driving options.

The latter is the balance between performance and fuel efficiency. However, if you want to reduce the time of visiting local gas stations inside the city, consider turning on your eco button.

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