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Saturday, October 1st, 2011

Toyota used strategy to breath new life into idled robotics that now build the 2012 Camry with lower costs and a very competitive price structure.

Toyota Robots Building Camry

With false accusations, an erroneous government onslaught, earthquakes, tsunamis, and economic turmoil chipping away at sales and brand loyalty, Toyota knew when approaching a redesigned for the 2012 Camry that a priceincrease wasn’t an option. While Camry remains the best selling car in America, its lead has diminished  and competitors such as the Hyundai Sonata and the Ford Fusion have seen double-digit sales increases over the last year. Pricing the Camry over its competition, and in the midst of a recession, could positionthe car to customer push-back before it even hit the market.

One of Toyota’s primary production goals for the new Camry was cost containment. Wherever possible, the automaker looked to boost production efficiencies, and one way was to reuse existing production assets from idled facilities.

Building the 2012 Camry in Toyota’s Georgetown, Kentucky, plant are the same robots once used by NUMMI, the former Toyota-GM project facility in Fremont, Calif. The robots once welded up Toyota Matrix hatchbacks, but with fresh tooling and reprogramming, they’re now building the mid-size Camry sedan, cutting costs and keeping the pricing structure down.

Toyota won’t say how much it saved by repurposing the robots. Yet the new Camry is priced at an average of two percent less than the model it replaces. On higher-end models, the savings are even more significant.


Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

Toyota is suspending U.S. Sales on 8 popular Car and Truck models to fix a potential Accelerator, Throttle, Gas Pedal Problem. These models include the following: the 2009-2010 RAV4, the 2009-2010 Corolla, the 2007-2010 Camry, the 2009-2010 Matrix, the 2005-2010 Avalon, the 2010 Highlander, the 2007-2010 Tundra and the 2008-2010 suspended sales

This is a Good Thing…There is a passage from (Jeremiah 6:16) that says:”Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.”

The Toyota Production Process operates on a set of its own foundation principles and paths somewhat ancient in origin and involve process concepts of Jidoka, AndonGenchi Genbutsu, and a few others. Jidoka is a term that has evolved to mean automation with a human touch or the ability to stop production lines anytime at the sight of a problem. Andon refers to realtime visual and physical controls about current production state of affairs; Any Toyota worker can stop the production line  any time at the sign of trouble by pulling an “ANDON CORD”. Genchi Genbutsu is to “Go and See” and is the belief that practical experience is more valuable than theoretical knowledge; “One must see the problem to know the problem”.

Toyota is calling upon its own successful ancient paths of experience by taking Bold Action to pull the “Andon Cord” on Sales and Production of 8 U.S. Popular Core Product Vehicles so that they can apply “Genchi Genbutsu” to quickly and effectively solve and eliminate once and for all any Accelerator problem it may have with the suspended vehicles. Toyota is willing to do this for as long as it takes to eliminate any problem that might exist.

Yes, this is a Bold and Risky Move; yet a move that Must Be Taken and one that is True to the Heart Of Toyota Integrity. Think about it, instead of continuing to build and sell football field after football field full of defect laiden product like domestic manufacturers have done in the past, Toyota is stopping everything to get it right, “Nip It In The Bud”, before they allow business to continue. What a novel concept,,, stopping everything to get it right before allowing business to continue…Come to think of it,,, the U.S. Government could learn a few things here…….

Toyota is going the extra mile to reassure people that they really care about the customers. This is something that is going to be a short-term hardship on Dealers and Toyota; yet, in the long-term a homerun for Toyota , Dealers, and Customers.

God said follow the ancient paths. He probably taught Barney Fife to “Nip It In the Bud”. Toyota is using both to solve this one…