It's not uncommon for an engine to burn a little oil, and that's not an indication of anything seriously wrong. In fact, it's probably good for the upper valve area to have a bit of oil to burn.
However, it is worth monitoring to make sure this situation does not deteriorate into something which *is* a problem.
My rule of thumb is that if an engine consisently and year after year burns the same small amount of oil, it's fine. If the amount of oil consumed increases year by year or month by month, this is worth checking further with a Cylinder Leakdown Test to see what's going on.
It's up to you to keep a record of oil consumption and if you notice it increasing you should report it to the dealer at about a quart every 1500 miles. That's my red flag for concern (on a newer engine). On an older car, even 1500 is fine.
An engine can burn a reasonable amount of oil and run forever--it doesn't affect longevity or smog tests as long as it is not ridiculously excessive.
Transmission: I can't really say because I don't know what RPM it is shifting at.