Ford: Continuous Improvement in Action w/ Taurus

Although the term “improvement” is one that is not often heard, as though some people would contend that it is the proverbial “price of admission,” but then you’ve got to wonder how they got in, this is something that is being seriously undertaken at Ford, as can be discerned as Derrick Kuzak, Ford group vice president, Product Development, points out that the just-unveiled 2013 Ford Taurus, which is to become available later this year, follows the introduction of the current model by fewer than three years.

Although the term “improvement” is one that is not often heard, as though some people would contend that it is the proverbial “price of admission,” but then you’ve got to wonder how they got in, this is something that is being seriously undertaken at Ford, as can be discerned as Derrick Kuzak, Ford group vice president, Product Development, points out that the just-unveiled 2013 Ford Taurus, which is to become available later this year, follows the introduction of the current model by fewer than three years.

That’s right: the one rolling right now came out in August 2009, and now, what Kuzak describes as “more than a car. . .a rolling showcase,” is being prepped for production in the Ford Chicago Assembly Plant.

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Ford has had a fairly tight relationship with Microsoft and other non-automotive companies over the recent past, and as such there has been a wide exposure to different kinds of thinking. Whereas automotive is usually slow-moving, these other companies are quick to market.

Thanks, no doubt, to working with people who think and act fast, Kuzak now says, “Ford is not just an auto company—it is a technology company. Technology companies are never finished in making their products; they are continuously making them better.”

We’ll take a closer look at some of the changes that Ford has made for the 2013 Taurus, most of which are in the areas of exterior design, interior refinement, and powertrain (yes, the car is getting another EcoBoost, this time a 2.0 liter). And for those who are wondering, the Ford SHO isn’t going to be going on any hiatus, they’ve actually made the 2013 SHO even more aggro.

It is simply worth thinking about not only how the competitors in auto now need to work at a faster clockspeed, and work at upping the game of products that are ready winners in their class.