Nissan Plant "Worst in the U.S."


To those who like to lump all “Japanese” automakers into one category, here's some news on Nissan and their Mississippi plant that opened in 2003.

Open less than three years, the Nissan assembly plant in Canton, just north of Jackson, recorded a dubious achievement recently: four of the five vehicles made there landed at the bottom of the Consumer Reports reliability list.

The problems Consumer Reports found in vehicles produced at the plant – including vibrations, squeaks and rattles – caused Champion to label Canton the “worst plant in the U.S.”

“It's a bit of a wakeup call for Nissan,” said David Champion, director of automobile testing for Consumer Reports. “I'm sure they are working extremely hard to improve these vehicles. They really need to put all those problems to bed.”

I'm not an expert on Nissan, but I've read before about their lean efforts. Their Smyrna TN plant is often on top of the productivity lists (measures as assembly hours per vehicle, you can argue if that's the only important metric). Does anyone know how the “Nissan Production Way” compares to the Toyota Production System? From the link there, Nissan defines the NPW as:

The basis of this philosophy is best summed up as build it right the first time and do it with the minimum amount of resources or better yet quality driven, waste free.

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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and professional speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. His latest book is Measures of Success: React Less, Lead Better, Improve More. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. He also published the anthology Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also a Senior Advisor to the technology company KaiNexus.

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