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Quality, History & Traditions

The Toyota heritage is one built on quality
From day one, Toyota has prioritised high quality in its products and services. Over the years we have introduced principles and processes to ensure that our quality levels continue to improve.

Quality from day one

Throughout our almost 100 years of existence – even from the days of the original Toyoda family weaving business and before we began making vehicles – we have built a global reputation for delivering high-quality products and services. It’s something we are committed to maintaining and extending. Moreover, from day one, Toyota has steadfastly carried out quality assurance activities, resulting in top ratings from our customers. We constantly improve our knowledge, processes, products and services to deliver ever-higher quality levels in everything we do. 

Quality assurance principles

The core principles behind our quality assurance system, including ‘Customer First’, ‘Quality First’ and ‘Genchi Genbutsu’ (Go & See at the scene), were established when the company was founded. Since then, these principles have been passed on and inform every organisational level of Toyota today, from the shop floor to executive management. We are proud of these traditions, which we continue to develop and improve to meet new challenges. In recent times our Total Quality Control process has helped us continuously improve the quality and reliability of our vehicles.

 

Quality means being customer-oriented

Back in 1969, Toyota in Japan had already introduced a vehicle recall system. At that time we used a series of high-profile newspaper advertisement features to show how customers are our first concern in ensuring quality in every part of our business. This commitment is just as relevant today as it was then. The intelligence gathering and analysis of customer feedback helps us with planning new products, raising quality standards and improving the way we work and the services we provide.

The origin of the Andon Principle

The Andon Principle was created by Sakichi Toyoda in 1924 to enable his Type G-automatic loom machine to stop whenever an issue occurred. Originally it referred to a button or pull-chord, which automatically halted production when activated by a member of staff. The term comes from the Japanese word for a paper lantern, referring to an illuminated signal notifying another of a problem. Andon now refers to a visual aid that highlights a problem where action is required in a specific area or workstation. This allows a solution to be found before it is too late to rectify.

The contribution of TPS to Quality

In 1955, strongly supported by Toyota Executive Eiji Toyoda, engineer Taiichi Ohno and his team became the catalyst behind the Toyota Production System (TPS) that we know today. TPS increases production speed, quality and customer satisfaction. It’s the umbrella term for Jidoka, Just-in-Time, and our other Quality protocols. By applying these concepts, we are able to produce vehicles quickly and efficiently. It allows everyone to meet our high-quality standards and our customers’ individual requirements. 

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