I'm reading this article in Quora.

And there's this sentence:

One key thing to remember is from the day the design director first puts his idea on paper to the day Job 1 or first customer car is produced it will take 5 - 10 years.

What does Job 1 mean here? Does that mean a prototype?

  • I'm a native speaker and have never heard this phrase outside of the advertising jingle "Quality is Job 1", where it means something different. Whoever wrote the article didn't expect you to know what it meant, so they wrote the idea in two different ways: "Job 1 or first customer car".
    – pfalstad
    Oct 10, 2019 at 21:17

1 Answer 1


From a Harvard Business Review article:

In the auto industry the term “Job 1” is used to denote the first car of a new model that comes off the assembly line. It’s a time when all the work to create the right product and the right process either comes together or doesn’t.

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