The importance of product development cycle time and cost in the development of product families Academic Article uri icon


  • In today's technologically driven world, the importance of innovation and product development is growing. Firms must develop innovative products faster and more efficiently. This has increased the importance of being able to quantify product development performance. Thiswork attempts to quantify development effort and lead-time based on product and project characteristics through the use of a generative cost model. The model developed in this work projects development cost using direct engineering effort along with indirect cost. These costs are then compared with fabrication and assembly costs. The effects of product platforming on development lead-time and cost are analysed. Two case studies are examined: two instrument panel (IP) beam families and an automotive body-in-white (BIW) family. Results indicate that development costs, while generally a small percentage of total costs, can have significant effects on technology choice and lead to substantial cost savings in product families. Part size and complexity are shown to have the most significant influence over development effort. 2011 Taylor & Francis.

published proceedings

  • Journal of Engineering Design

author list (cited authors)

  • Johnson, M. D., & Kirchain, R. E.

citation count

  • 21

complete list of authors

  • Johnson, Michael D||Kirchain, Randolph E

publication date

  • June 2009