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I will be using a trailer for my Dec. holiday. I have a 2006 Honda Civic VXi 1.8 Auto. What I need questions on:

1) Do drive in the normal D or D3?

2) Pulling a trailer with an automatic, how does it influence consumption?

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According to this website, the towing capacity of your vehicle is 3306lbs/1500kg. The weight here should include all cargo inside the vehicle (including driver/passengers and fuel), the trailer weight, and then the cargo inside trailer. All of this adds up and you should be aware of it.

1) Do drive in the normal D or D3?

You want to just keep the transmission in Drive (normal position for driving). The transmission. ECM/PCM will understand exactly what your transmission needs to be doing and will down shift as needed to compensate for driving conditions.

2) Pulling a trailer with an automatic, how does it influence consumption?

You will probably see a substantial drop in fuel mileage while towing a trailer. This really is dependent upon your driving style (mainly how fast you'll be driving), how hard you push your vehicle, and the extra drag from the trailer (larger size = larger drag). I would suspect you could see a drop of somewhere in the 5-10% mileage range. This would probably be the same for an automatic or a standard shift vehicle.

The main things you need to be worried about while towing a trailer is to not go over speed (stay under the speed limit), use slow steady motions while driving (don't do sudden lane changes), leave plenty of room for braking, and be aware you have something traveling behind you (ie: give yourself more clearance while changing lanes and going around corners). Remember, the safety of yourself, your passengers, and those around you are at stake.

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  • I'm not sure I trust the numbers on that site; according to them, Honda managed to cut the curb weight of that model by 36% between 2006 and 2007? Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 6:20
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    In fact, I own a 2006 Civic myself (US model, 4-door, LX trim, 1.8L engine). The manual says the maximum weight for the trailer and its contents is 450 kg. That's a pretty small trailer. (Deleted erroneous comment about GVWR.) Commented Dec 15, 2014 at 6:37
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If your 2006 Civic is anything like mine, there is a section in your owner's manual entitled "Towing a trailer" which should answer your first question. In mine it says to use D on level roads and D3 in hilly terrain.

It would be wise to read that section carefully and completely as it contains many essential safety instructions.

In particular, in mine it says the maximum weight for the trailer and its contents is 450 kg. I hope you have a really small trailer in mind. You might get away with a pod-type "sport trailer" like this one but even that weighs 250 kg empty.

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