A check engine light code came up that says i need a new variable valve timing gear. on 1999 Lexus ES300

A check engine light came on and the code read that it was the variable valve timing gear. Does this car have variable valve timing gears and could it be something much simpler like a sensor? Dealer wants $1800 to fix. ouch Any ideas. Plus my usually reliable mechanic is a little unfamiliar with lexus/toyota and he says he doesn't think he sees thenm in this car. Go figure.

by in Macon, GA on February 14, 2011
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1 answer 1 comment
ANSWER by , February 14, 2011
would be helpful to have the code that they found. it's always good to have a second opinion from a reputable Japanese specialty shop. ask around and see where other Lexus/Toyota owners go. the dealer is always going to higher the everyone else.
COMMENT by , February 16, 2011
Thanks for the reply, i've done more research and of course this car does have the variable timing gears but they are enclosed. It seems there is a problem with the oil control valve as this car's timing is dependent on oil pressure. My mechanic is removing the oil valves and cleaning them (one per head) and hope this fixes it.