AIAG is set to release the 3rd edition of its pivotal APQP manual along with a stand-alone Control Plan. What does this mean for automotive quality management? Our latest blog delves into the nuances of these upcoming editions, their implications on the automotive industry, and why this is a milestone you can’t afford to miss. From integrating agile methodologies to focusing on ‘Safe Launch’ plans, get a comprehensive look at what’s changing and what remains the same in the quality management landscape.

AIAG's Upcoming 3rd Edition APQP Manual and Stand-Alone Control Plan: A New Chapter in Automotive Quality Management

On October 3, 2023, the Automotive Industry Action Group (AIAG) announced that they are on the brink of releasing the 3rd edition of their Advanced Product Quality Planning (APQP) manual and a new stand-alone Control Plan. The announcement comes just a day before the commencement of the 2023 AIAG Quality Summit, which promises to shed further light on these upcoming publications. Given the significance of APQP and Control Plans in quality management, this is noteworthy news for automotive industry stakeholders. This article aims to delve into the nuances of these upcoming editions, their importance, and the broader impact on the automotive industry.

Understanding APQP: The Context

APQP, or Advanced Product Quality Planning, is a comprehensive framework designed to guide the development and production of high-quality automotive components. Originating in the automotive industry, APQP has been expanded to include several sectors such as aerospace, medical devices, and consumer electronics. It consists of a series of steps and tools, such as risk assessments, Failure Modes and Effects Analysis (FMEA), and control plans. The primary objective is to preempt quality issues, elevate customer satisfaction, and instigate ongoing improvement.

APQP Core Tools

  1. FMEA (Failure Modes and Effects Analysis): An analytical methodology designed to address potential problems at various stages of product and process development.
  2. PPAP (Production Part Approval Process): Establishes an industry standard for the approval process of production parts.
  3. MSA (Measurement Systems Analysis): Evaluates the quality of measurement systems, providing scope for improvement.
  4. SPC (Statistical Process Control): Employs statistical techniques to control and improve process capability.

Where Else is APQP Applicable?

APQP methodologies are not confined to the automotive industry. They have found applications in:

  • Aerospace and Defense
  • Medical Devices
  • Electronics
  • Consumer Products

The New APQP 3rd Edition: What's Different?

The 3rd edition of the APQP manual aims to include updates reflecting agile product management and places a heightened focus on improving successful new product launches. It aspires to add greater depth to the “why,” “what,” and “when” behind the traditional APQP processes. These updates indicate a move towards integrating modern project management methodologies like agile with traditional quality planning, a development that could bring about more responsive and flexible quality management processes.

The Stand-Alone Control Plan

Control Plans are integral to APQP, offering detailed guidelines on maintaining product and process quality. The new stand-alone Control Plan is expected to provide comprehensive insights into the development and management of these plans. This edition will also feature:

  • Safe Launch Plans: Guidelines for successfully launching new products or processes.
  • Automated Manufacturing Applications: Special focus on highly automated manufacturing settings.
  • Software Utility: Information on how software can aid in the development and management of control plans.

Key Benefits of APQP

  1. Improved Product Quality: Through rigorous planning and trials.
  2. Enhanced Customer Satisfaction: A direct consequence of superior product quality.
  3. Cost-Efficiency: Minimization of reworks, warranty claims, and other quality-related costs.
  4. Streamlined Supplier Relations: Better understanding of customer needs.
  5. Risk Management: Early identification and mitigation of potential issues.
  6. Improved Process Control: With the amalgamation of various quality control methodologies.

Implications for the Industry

With the push towards electrification and digital transformation, understanding and implementing updated APQP methodologies become paramount. The 2023 AIAG Quality Summit intends to discuss these changes and more, offering a platform for quality management professionals to understand and adapt to the evolving landscape.


The announcement of the 3rd edition of the APQP manual and the stand-alone Control Plan is a significant milestone in automotive quality management. As technologies like electrification become mainstream, there is a pressing need for updated methodologies that can integrate traditional and modern approaches to product quality planning. These new releases promise to offer invaluable insights and tools for navigating the increasingly complex landscape of automotive quality management. Industry stakeholders should keep a close eye on the upcoming 2023 AIAG Quality Summit for more details on these game-changing publications. In the meantime, reach out to request a demo or to try our automotive suite of applications during a no-cost, 30-day POC (proof of concept) to see how we can help you manage your APQP/PPAP projects and streamline your implementation of all AIAG Core Tools.

Interested in learning more about APQP, Control Plans, or other quality management topics? Sign up for the 2023 AIAG Quality Summit, which will feature in-depth discussions on these subjects and more.

View Agenda for the 2023 AIAG Quality Summit


PPAP (Production Parts Approval Process) Management System

  • Single PPAP Management Process
  • Seamless Automated Workflows
  • Fully Configurable
  • Integrated with SupplierQuest
  • Integrated with Collaboration Portal for Supplier Collaboration
  • Status Timelines and Cycle Times
  • Automated Email Notifications
  • History and Traceability
  • Automated Signoffs and Approvals
  • Powerful Dashboard for Reporting and Analytics using Power BI Integration
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