Fundamental to fast product development is a good, robust relationship between design and manufacturing. Which is one of the things that can be realized through the use of a product lifecycle management (PLM) system. One company that's taking advantage of a PLM-based solution for configuration management, resulting in speedier product development, is Nissan Diesel Motor, which produces various classes of trucks, as well as engines, components and special vehicles. The company is deploying ENOVIA, an IBM PLM product developed by Dassault Systèmes (www.ibm.com/solutions/plm). For example, it is using the software's Digital Mock-up (DMU) Navigator to simulate manufacturing processes so that any errors are caught earlier in production planning than otherwise would be the case. "Building a system capable of managing the amount of data involved in the layout of an entire truck requires a considerable amount of time and energy," admits Osamu Mitsuhashi, manager, information systems planning, Nissan Diesel. But that time and energy are paying off, as they've found that the configuration management system they've deployed is shortening the cycle time required to create a new vehicle layout by 90%.