Rpms with manual shift at 70 mph

Thinking of buying a new civic with mt. One annoying thing is many mt rev higher at speed than automatics.

Tried to find out online how highcivic revs, couldn’t find it though.

I’m thinking anything over 2500 is going to sound whiny on a long trip.

Just Curious, Why Are You Considering A Manual Transmission?

I’ve heard bad things about the cvt reliability. Also been in some and they rev very weirdly. Droning.

Found this online:
A 2014 Civic LX. On the highway, the car revs in 5th gear at 3,000 rpm at 70 mph and 80 at 3,500 rpm.

But the 2016 has a 6 speed so these are old numbers.

Take one for a test drive and look at the odo…

The final drive ratio determines engine rpm in high gear and while I am not familiar with the specific ratios of most cars I can say that in any given vehicle with various power train options smaller engines must operate at higher revs than larger engines at any given speed and often the larger engines are mated to automatics while the smaller engines are mated to manuals. And 2,500 rpms shouldn’t be annoying if the car has adequate sound insulation so possibly the manual transmissions are most often found on the basic version of the civic with the smallest engine and a bare minimum of insulation. Hopefully someone here is familiar with late model Civics and can be more specific in answering your question though.

Remember, while reaching 5000 rpm in 1st or 2nd gear may seem noisy, by the time you’re on the highway doing 70+, there is enough road noise and wind noise that the engine may be barely audible. And 4 cylinder engines always rev higher, they have more work to do than a 6 or 8. But the numbers BillRussell posted above do seem kind of high.

For comparison, my 2002 Explorer V6 runs 2200 rpm at 80 mph. My 2006 Town Car V8 also runs about 2200 rpm at 80. My wife’s 2002 Mercury Sable will run 3500 rpm at 90.

Two words— Test Drive

"I’m thinking anything over 2500 is going to sound whiny on a long trip. "

“Just Curious, Why Are You Considering A Manual Transmission?”

“I’ve heard bad things about the cvt reliability. Also been in some and they rev very weirdly. Droning. “
”…the car revs in 5th gear at 3,000 rpm at 70 mph and 80 at 3,500 rpm.”
"…by the time you’re on the highway doing 70+, there is enough road noise and wind noise that the engine may be barely audible."

Just Curious, Why Are You Considering A Manual Transmission? Honda Civic?


I know the feeling, sometimes finding out overall gear ratios for a car requires real detective work. Google “transmission gear ratios” + the car you are interested in. This will most likely give you the best chance of success. You are still going to have to do the math and be able to figure out tire rpm at a given speed. Many tire websites give overall inflated diameter of their tires which you can use to figure the wheel rpm at a given speed. Multiply that by your overall gear ratio in high gear to get engine rpm.

One of the reasons I ride motorcycles with chain drive is because it is so easy to change final gear ratios. I replaced the stock 14 tooth transmission output shaft sprocket with a 15 tooth sprocket and now my 6th gear feels like a real overdrive instead of a bike that’s “permanently in a passing gear”.
I hate short gearing in motorcycles and it’s one reason I’ll probably never own another shaft drive bike.

Thanks. Why honda civic? Reliability, good driving characteristics, not a direct injection (heard valve deposits). Might go for a camry or corolla.

I’d likd to change my own oil too, but that’s harder in newer cars. They don’t use the spin on filters anymore.

Actually, the CVT sometimes gets a bad rep. I have one in a 15 Forester, and it works great. Great MPG. Even at 75 MPH, the RPMs are at about 2000. No excessive noise although the engine is a bit noisy, and tire noise a bit much sometimes.

My cars are generally around 2000 rpm at 70 with automatic and V6s. I did rent a manual Vauxall though and that thing was running at 3000 rpm on the highway. I was stopping for gas all the time. Buzz boxes.

Volvo said it perfectly: test drive it.
There are so many things that go into whether a specific individual is comfortable with a specific car, including its noise, that it’s impossible for anyone to guess whether the engine noise will bother you. Besides, once you wear out the first set of tires and buy new ones of a different treat pattern, the noise is going to change anyway.

One more point: nobody over the internet can make this decision for you. It’s 100% subjective. Test drive the car and see if you like it.

“Buzzines” occurs when there are soft parts vibrating with the engine. A sports bike idling at 2000+ rpm would not exhibit this as there are a lot less soft parts. A Subaru with a flat four would not buzz as much either because the flat engine is nearly balanced so it doesn’t vibrate much. You are buying a Honda, not an Acura. I wouldn’t fault the company if they don’t spend the money on reducing NVH of the interior.

I had a 2003 Scion xb that cruises at 60 with 3000 on the tach and it was buzzy. But it was never an issue for me; it was a good car for the money.

I have an '03 Civic EX w 5 speed mt. The motors “sweet” spot is 3000 rpm. At that rpm plenty of torque so the cruise control never bogs down the motor. 60 mph is at 2,900 and 70 is 3200 approximately. Motor noise and buzzing are not an issue. Wind noise, tire and road noise drown out noise from the motor.

I’ve had this Civic since new and have 165k miles on it. It cruises along at 70 mph just great and gets 38 - 40 mpg on 70 mph trips.

The new Civic has a 6th gear and might have a lower final drive ratio, meaning fewer rpms at 70 mph.

Here’s what I found out searching the internet for info on the MT Honda Civic Sedan.
Transmission gear ratios:
1st 3.643
2nd 2.080
3rd 1.361
4th 1.024
5th 0.830
6th 0.686

Final 4.105

Overall reduction in 6th = 4.105 X .686 = 2.816

Inflated diameter of 215/55 R16 93H tires = 25.3 inches which works out to 827 revolutions per mile.

827 X 2.816 = 2329 engine revolutions per mile.
Since 60 mph = one mile per minute, the 60 mph engine rpm is 2329 rpm.

2329 X 70/60 = 2717 engine rpm@70mph

The CVT has a upper ratio of .408 but a final drive ratio o 4.680 resulting in a 1.909 overall upper gear ratio = 1579 rpm@60mph or 1842 rpm@70mph. However, it will likely only be in that high a ratio on downgrades or while coasting to a stop.


3000 rpm is the sweet spot in my motor too, and is the 70 mph rpm. That seems to be typical of small 4-bangers from “Japanese” manufacturers… I use that term loosely because so many of these vehicles are designed and manufactured in the U.S. now.

I dramatically reduced wind and road noise in mine some years back. I gutted the interior and lined it with sound insulation (dynomat on the sheetmetal and special fiber matting in the cavities). I was expecting a reduction in noise from the car itself, but was truly surprised at the very noticeable reduction in noise from outside the car. Wind noise and noise from passing vehicles almost entirely disappeared. A lot more of that was penetrating the body than I realized. I did it for fun, but I learned a great deal.

However, unless the OP is as crazy as I am, that doesn’t help. He NEEDS to test drive the car. Nobody can tell him over the internet whether the car’s noise will bother him.

The CVT’s are greatly improved over the last couple of years. The early adopters paid heavily to make these improvements possible. CVT’s are now the go to transmission for fuel economy where the 6 speed manual is the performance transmission.

I don’t know about the Civic but the new Accord with the CVT has an economy mode that forces higher ratios earlier (lower speeds) than the normal mode. That really boosts the fuel economy for normal driving, but you will be well off the power curve. It holds that top ration down to fairly low speeds. Some people think that hurts the engine but it doesn’t.

Hondas are great at high rpms, it all comes down to how the OP likes it. As other have said, a test drive will determine all…

Take a test drive at 70+. I bought a 2001 extended cab Chevy S-10 with a test drive around town. It was a 5-speed with a 4-banger. When I got it on the interstate a few days after buying it…I found out that the engine ran about 4000 at 70+. My wife just looked over at me and gave me a “thumbs down.” I found out later that the original owner had installed another differential so that he could tow a small boat. The little S-10 was soon sold and I bought a 4-door Dakota.