The manual transmission is alive and well at Honda.
If you’re a fan of the manual transmission the upcoming 11th generation Honda Civic Si and Type-R has a treat for you. In true Honda tradition, the high-performance Civic offerings will remain manual transmission only. In a live video overview of the upcoming 11th generation Civic Honda Public Relations representative Carl Pulley confirms at the nine minute and thirty second mark that the manual transmission performance Civics are here to stay.
When it comes to manual transmissions versus high-performance automatics and dual-clutches the online debates are endless. For some, there is no substitute for rowing your own gears while others prefer the improved performance and predictability of an automatic transmission.
Regardless of the philosophical debates that rage online, it’s important to remember why car manufacturers build vehicles in the first place. Like all companies, your favorite automotive brand is simply building a product to generate revenue. To generate the maximum amount of revenue possible, companies build products with wide appeal and then they tweak them ever so slightly to capture unique market segments.
Gallery: 2021 Honda Civic Type R Limited Edition First Drive
What’s interesting about the hot Civics compared to their competitors is the lack of an automatic transmission option. If Honda wanted to sell more Civic Si’s and Type-R’s they would need to include an automatic transmission option for those who aren’t too keen on learning manual.
There is no clear answer as to why Honda has opted to keep the Si and Type-R manual only but I highly doubt it all comes down to tradition. The cost of developing a new transmission in a high-performance application for low-volume models doesn’t make strong business sense for Honda especially considering most of their other vehicles utilize CVTs.
Honda makes some of the best manual transmissions in the business and for now, they’re more than enough for the Civic Si and Civic Type-R. Will we see an automatic transmission setup for future high-performance Civics? Well, we will just have to wait and see.