AMT or CVT: Which automatic transmission technology is better?

Automatic transmissions come minus any clutch, ensuring a more convenient driving experience, especially in the bumper to bumper urban traffic. Automatic transmission-equipped cars come with dual peddle technology, which includes accelerator and brake, but no clutch. Automatic transmission technology has a wide range of varieties such as AMT, CVT, DCT, torque converters, Tiptronic etc.

By: HT Auto Desk
| Updated on: 22 Mar 2022, 16:28 PM
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If you are primarily driving within city limits, the AMT is a good choice as long as you aren't an authentic driving enthusiast.
If you are primarily driving within city limits, the AMT is a good choice as long as you aren't an authentic driving enthusiast.

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The AMT and CVT are the two most popular car transmissions in India. While the CVT has been in use for a long time in India, the AMT gearbox was introduced in 2014 and found a niche for itself in the affordable automatic car segment.

So, what is the difference between AMT and CVT? Which is a better transmission technology? Why AMT is more popular than CVT in India?


Automated Manual Transmission or AMT is known for being affordable and fuel-efficient compared to any other automatic transmission technology. Currently, it is the most affordable automatic transmission technology available in India. AMT operates similarly to a manual gearbox. The clutch and gear shifting in AMT are automated either through hydraulic actuators or semi-electronic components, which require lesser drive input to drive the car.

There are some disadvantages of the AMT as well. AMT can be a bit jerky sometimes and may impact riding comfort. However, it is useful for the new drivers. Some popular passenger vehicles such as Maruti Suzuki Celerio, Maruti Suzuki Alto, Tata Nexon, Renault Duster uses this technology.


CVT or Continuously Variable Transmission is another popular form of automatic transmission. This technology employs pulleys or belts instead of steel gears. CVT offers a continuous gear shift with different gear ratios depending on engine speed. CVT allows continuous acceleration and maximum fuel efficiency. Popular cars in India with CVT include Honda City, Maruti Suzuki Baleno, Honda Jazz among others.

Why does AMT sell better than CVT?

AMT cars sell better than CVT or any other type of automatic car in India. There are a few factors that drive sales of AMT cars in the country. One of them is driving comfort. AMT cars are easier to drive than manual ones. In case of a bumper to the bumper congested traffic situation, the creep function of AMT cars propels them at around six kmph without the driver's input. This ensures the car moves slowly in traffic that is very slow-moving. Also, the absence of cutch pressing and gear shifting is another reason behind its popularity.

ComfortSlight jerk in higher RPMSmooth
MaintenanceCost-effectiveSlightly expensive
DriveabilityEasy in bumper to bumper trafficEasy in bumper to bumper traffic
Fuel efficiencyEfficientEfficient
Number of gearsFive to sixSingle

Compared to fully automatic cars, AMT cars are easier to maintain and more cost-effective. The cheap maintenance costs along with their better fuel efficiency compared to automatic models make them attractive options for buyers. Compared to automatic, CVT or DCT, AMT cars are much cheaper, which puts lesser pressure on the owner's pocket.

First Published Date: 22 Mar 2022, 16:28 PM IST
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