I'd like to dispel a couple of automotive myths and in the process perhaps save you a few dollars. Expensive spark plugs do not increase your vehicles performance and power. Regular replacement does. While using a premium platinum plug will extend the service life of the plug, it will not in any way increase performance or power either.
The only realistic advantage of any premium platinum plug is a decrease in gap erosion. Gap erosion occurs when the spark burns away small bits of the electrode and ground contact during combustion. Over time a properly gapped plug will slightly increase it's gap but not generally enough to cause any problems if the plugs are replaced in accordance with the manufacturers suggested maintenance routine. So the extra dollars you pay for these kinds of plugs are truly wasted if you are a responsible vehicle owner who changes the plugs regularly like you should.
I know many of you have heard and seen advertisements from ignition component manufacturers claiming their "special" plug design increases spark duration or voltage which is absolute nonsense. I've personally tested over thirty brands of spark plugs in both new and used engines using both a Sun scope and a bear engine analyzer. Not one "premium" or "performance" plug showed any improvement in spark trace, voltage or duration of spark and several showed faults not present when using standard stock replacement parts.
One prime example is the fraudulent campaign of a company I won't mention claiming to increase performance by using a V shaped electrode which they say (And show in their advertisements) creates "two" sparks during combustion thereby causing an increase in combustion output and more complete combustion in the chamber. One word. BULL. Any professional worth his weight can tell you that once combustion has begun, that's it. Everything else affecting combustion will be determined by the engines compression, timing and fuel mixture. You can't ignite the fuel mixture twice. Once it explodes, it's spent. So even if there was a second spark it would be attempting to ignite inert gases that no longer contained any combustible fuel, or, in the event of an inefficient combustion chamber (Due to bad valves, rings or worn cylinder walls.)any remaining usable fuel mixture would be pushed out the exhaust valve during the exhaust stroke of the engine.
Here's another one. "Our plug has a higher voltage which increases the sparks efficiency." Bull. I've tested factory and aftermarket coils vs. "performance" ignition coils and the stock coils consistently produced higher and more sustained voltages than the supposedly performance ones every time. The voltage that is sent to the plug will be the only determining factor of spark voltage in an otherwise properly performing engine, meaning as long as the plug gap, vehicle electrical system and the rest of the ignition system components are working properly, there can be no increase in spark voltage no matter what kind of plug you are using. Problems in plug gap, coil integrity, plug wires and cylinder compression are the determining factors at play. Any of these could contribute to spark pooling though. This condition is usually due to increased voltage needed to jump an improperly gapped plug, improper cylinder compression or to overcome a badly grounded plug and adversely affects performance. Inefficient combustion or misfiring may result as well.
Keep your engine and your wallet happy by installing properly gapped, stock or quality replacement spark plugs at the required intervals. Having been in this business for more than ten years I will generally use either AC, Motorcraft or Bosche Super spark plugs depending on the application and what's available at my favorite parts house. In many cases these plugs are actually less expensive and generally more reliable than those "other guys" products.
2RZ-FE & 3RZ-FE engines:
Gap .039" to .043"
Gap .039" to .043"