David Schramm, the chief engineer for Cable and Component Design (CCD), glanced at the RIM grommet in his hand and considered the risks and benefits (see the Appendix for a glossary of terms). Packard Electric had developed the RIM (Reaction Injection Molded) grommet as a new technology for passing the wires from the engine compartment through the fire wall to the passenger compartment of passenger automobiles.*

The Product, Process, and Reliability (PPR) committee, which had the final responsibility for the new product development process, had asked Schramm for his analysis and recommendation as to whether Packard Electric should commit to the RIM grommet for a 1992 model year car. It was already March ...

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