Browse Publications Technical Papers 2005-01-1566
2005-04-11

Achieving Craftsmanship Targets across the UK Automotive Supply Base, through the use of Quality Maturation Tools and Processes 2005-01-1566

With the quality of mainstream automobiles improving considerably over the past decade, and continuing to do so, it is becoming more difficult for the premium automotive manufacturers to differentiate their products from their less expensive competitors. The customers' perception of quality, often referred to within the industry as craftsmanship, is considered an important differentiator for premium brands and a crucial component of competitiveness [1]. Whilst vehicle design is fundamental to this customer-perceived quality, the delivery of the design is also critical and without the manufacturing capability to deliver the craftsmanship targets set, the New Product Introduction (NPI) process is flawed. This research investigates the roles of the vehicle manufacturer and supplier in the delivery of a premium vehicle, the factors that influence component and whole vehicle maturation, and the tools and processes, both current and in development, available to OEM and supplier. Furthermore, the research demonstrates that, whilst there is a current trend across the automotive industry toward virtual tools and simulation, physical maturation tools still play an important role in achieving the craftsmanship targets required by the premium automotive sector.

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