Nano: Disgusting! Shocking!

All these years, I have been seeing the evolution of a reliable quality control and management system that prided me. Auto sector was the leader in making the system fool-proof. While the zero defect concept started with project such as launching of satellites, the mass production required in auto sector made the practices of Total Quality Control or Management (TQC/TQM)getting matured with certifications such as Deming Prize with many other techniques such as Poka Yoke.

But it seems either the evolution of quality system did stop before the maturity or the system installed gets complacent causing the erratic mishap. The engineers and managers will still have to work to find a better way to ensure the reliability that is required with the cars of contemporary design. Another question also requires some pondering. Are the electronics and digital devices integrated the cause or can it be used to avoid the uncertainly or misses leading to mishap?

A brand new Nano catches fire and so also perhaps the brand. The burning Nano above is a dream on fire for at least me, if it is not so for the managers and employees of Tata Motors. How can a company remain complacent with such happening when a new car catches fire and turns into ashes? Will Tata Motors including Mr. Ratan Tata do sufficient to go for damage control before going with global dream? the story appeared few days ago, but the national media din’t publish this. Is something fishy?

I still think it as human failure at some point during design and manufacturing in the make-shift plant of Pantnagar or in workshops of some vendors. Tata Motors had plenty of time courtesy Mamta before launch for checking the design. But the prospective car buyers has the right to know the correct story from the horse’s mouth before taking the plunge in unswum water.

Unfortunately the car manufacturers and its network that extends up to the actual users world over have become insensitive to certain extent. It is pretty clear from a story in New York Times about a ‘Japan I Never Knew.’

Feeling her Toyota Mark X station wagon lurch forward at a busy intersection, Masako Sakai slammed on the brakes. But the pedal “had gone limp,” she said. Downshifting didn’t seem to work either.

Her car surged forward nearly 3,000 feet before slamming into a Mercedes Benz and a taxi, injuring drivers in both those vehicles and breaking Mrs. Sakai’s collarbone.

As shaken as she was by the accident, Mrs. Sakai says she was even more surprised by what happened after. She says that Toyota – from her dealer to headquarters – has not responded to her inquiries, and Japanese authorities have been indifferent to her concerns as a consumer.

Mrs. Sakai says the Tokyo Metropolitan Police urged her to sign a statement saying that she pressed the accelerator by mistake – something she strongly denies. She says the police told her she could have her damaged car back to get it repaired if she made that admission. She declined.

“In Japan, there is a phrase: if something smells, put a lid on it,” said Shunkichi Takayama, a Tokyo-based lawyer who has handled complaints related to Toyota vehicles.

Is not the story appears to be one from India, if the name are made Indian?

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