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Q: why does my car hesitate and cut out when I give it gas on 2003 Lexus GS430

At first my car would hesitate when cruising along and I would have to accelerate quickly, but all of a sudden it does it now when just starting out slowly. The vsc and check engine lights have come on several times, when climbing steep grades it seems. I remove the battery cables and the lights clear until I put a load on the engine. The lights are not on now, but it cuts out all the time when applying gas. The car starts and idles fine. Thank you!
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I cleaned the MAF sensor with MAF cleaner and replaced the K&N air filter with a regular one. This made a tremendous difference, but when idling, if the accelerator is depressed quickly there is a definite hesitation at first and then the engine revs normally.This also happens when driving and the accelerator is depressed quickly for increased speed, there is a momentary hesitation, but then the car responds smoothly and with the power it used to. Any suggestions? Thank you.
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Have it scanned when the light is on for better information and then post the codes so we can help.
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