Mohtaram AbubakarSIddiqi Sahib,
It depends on a couple of factors whether you should go for a manual or an automatic. Here they are:
1. Are you used to a manual? Do you know how to drive a manual?
2. Are you comfortable with manual?
If the answer to the above is 'yes' then go for a manual.
If I were you, I would go for a manual. Here is why:
1. You have more control over the vehicle with a manual transmission as compared to an automatic because in the former (manual) you do the shifting yourself.
2. Manual is sportier because you have more power within your hands. It gives you an impression of being Ayrton Senna!
3. Manual transmission consumes less fuel as compared to an automatic because engine's power loss is less in a clutch based system (manual) as compared to a torque converter based system (automatic).
4. Less maintenance is required for a manual transmission and you need periodic maintenance in an automatic with transmission fluid changes at around every 30,000 miles. You can drive a manual with no such fluid changes for virtually hundreds of thousands of miles.
5. Manual transmission is more durable as it is far less complex compared to an automatic. Simpler things with simpler mechanisms last longer. Imagine a simple strong lever, which is a simple machine, lasting forever if properly looked after as compared to a Boeing 787's Rolls Royce Trent 1000 jet engine, for a lever is a simple machine compared to a jet engine (which is a highly complex machine).
Here are the advantages of an automatic:
1. It is user friendly. Once you put into 'D', you forget moving you hands. For me, automatic is for lazy people, no offence to them please.
2. If you drive in traffic jams, manual will give you a lot of hassle as you will have to move your foot on the clutch and the gear-lever very often.
Talking about any locally assembled car, I don't see any point going for an automatic for they are small cars. If you go for a Mercedes S550, you don't go for a manual but an automatic because for me, automatic is a luxury and not a necessity. If you go for a luxury car, go for another luxury with it; an automatic transmission. The bigger the car, the better it is if you go for an automatic. The smaller the car, the better if you stick to a manual.
Here is the Physics of fuel consumption when comparing a manual and an automatic: Manual transmission gives you a better fuel economy than an automatic one for in the latter (automatic) there are power losses in the lower rpm range. In the higher rpm the damping lockup clutch kicks in to reduce power losses in the torque converter of the automatic transmission giving you a 100% contact between the engine and the transmission which is always a 100% contact in a manual regardless of what rpm the engine is at, leading to no relative power loss (in a manual). The pressure plate-clutch based transmission system (manual) is lot more efficient than a torque converter based (automatic) one; this is the reason automatics give you a poor fuel economy than manuals.
Specifically speaking about a Honda Civic, go for an automatic because it gives your a little more luxury than a manual one. For me luxury starts with a C Class or E Class Merc in the 1.8 bracket and Honda is there but after all it's a locally made car and there is less resale of a manual Civic too as compared to an automatic.
If you want to go for a manual for the sake of a manual then you can go for a Corolla Gli or if you need more power, then you can go for any locally-assembled 1.8; manual Civic or Corolla. Mind you, manual Civic has a lesser resale value as compared to an automatic.
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