Ford: Quality equal to Toyota

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Detroit News Article

In terms of initial vehicle quality, Ford Motor Co. is in a statistical dead-heat for second place with Japan's Toyota Motor Corp. and Nissan Motor Co., according to a new study the Dearborn automaker plans to release today. Honda Motor Co. is the quality leader.

There are other quality measurements beyond initial quality:

In terms of initial vehicle quality, Ford Motor Co. is in a statistical dead-heat for second place with Japan's Toyota Motor Corp. and Nissan Motor Co., according to a new study the Dearborn automaker plans to release today. Honda Motor Co. is the quality leader.

It's nice to see Ford making quality improvements. As Deming might have asked, “By what methods?” Is the quality improvement a design effort (DFSS or Design For Six Sigma, maybe?) or a production quality effort, possibly driven by Lean methods?

As GM has complained about, it takes time for customer perception to catch up to reality.

And dealers say improved quality is helping bring customers back into their showrooms.

“We're not seeing the recalls after the launch of the vehicles like we used to,” said Tim Mullahey of Mullahey Ford in Arroyo Grande, Calif. He said rampant recalls in the 1990s did immeasurable damage to Ford's brand image. Now, he and other dealers are touting Ford's recent quality improvements in their advertising. “The problem is really one of perception. We're trying to overcome the stereotypes.”

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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.

2 Comments
  1. Chuck Yorke says

    It’s nice to hear some positive news about Ford.

  2. Ron Pereira says

    Good for Ford. What does the data look like after a car has been on the road for 5 years? This is the key to me. I would be interested to see all of their data. But I agree with Chuck… good to see some good news from an American car company.

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