The meaning of the abbreviation CVT is Continuously Variable Transmission, and it is a type of single-speed automatic gearbox. The CVT gearbox has been used in various different cars, but you’ll usually find it fitted to a small car. Its compact size and simplicity of construction means it’s more cost-effective to use in a small car than a conventional automatic gearbox. Makers that currently use CVT in their cars include Toyota, Nissan and Honda, while Audi’s Multitronic auto is a variation of the CVT gearbox.
In many ways a CVT gearbox is similar to a regular auto. For starters, there is no clutch pedal in a CVT-equipped car, so you can drive it on an automatic-only UK driving licence. You’ll also find that if a car is offered with a CVT gearbox, it will be more expensive than the same model with a manual gearbox, just like a regular auto. If you compared them back-to-back, the manual model would have better claimed fuel economy, too. But again, that’s the same as you’ll find with a regular auto ‘box.