_ VTi has the better engine; it has a 3-stage vtec. If you don't want a VTi, a Corolla XLi or a GLi would be a better choice.
_ As for the transmission, it depends on how much you travel. If you mostly drive at high speeds on GT road and the motorways, automatic would be the better choice. It has a taller final drive; the revs will be lower, and the engine will be quieter at high speeds.
_ If you can handle it, the manual would be better in the city for fuel economy.
_Without any special driving techniques, expect 10 in the city for the prosmatic, and 11 for the manual, without A/C.
_ If you are willing to learn, even the prosmatic will give excellent fuel economy. Check my signature.
_ My dad got his Civic (2003 VTi Oriel Prosmatic UG) back in 2010 for 950k, 80k driven. Apparently, it was "total genuine, non accidented". A year later, it was revealed to be a lie; the right side paint had faded. A mechanic later told us that this car was accidented on the right side, and he had worked on it himself.
_ So, when buying such an old car, never trust anyone who uses words like "total genuine", "outclass condition", "alhamdullilah no need for maintenance, just buy and drive".
_Other members can guide about its resale. Its nothing outstanding, especially if the car is in a poor condition.