KARIYA, Japan – Even Taiichi Ohno, the father of lean manufacturing and the Toyota Production System, would have been impressed with Toyota Boshoku Corp.’s Sanage factory. Located 20 miles (32 km) north of the supplier’s headquarters here, the Sanage plant makes seats for a series of Toyota Motor Corp. cars, including the Vitz, Camry and Prius. Built into a hillside overlooking a smattering of small farms and homes, the plant has achieved productivity and quality scores that rank among ...
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