as·​sem·​bly-line | \ ə-ˈsem-blē-ˌlīn \

Definition of assembly-line

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: made by or as if by an assembly line especially : lacking originality or creativity bored by the novel's assembly-line plot

assembly line


Definition of assembly line (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an arrangement of machines, equipment, and workers in which work passes from operation to operation in direct line until the product is assembled
2 : a process for turning out a finished product in a mechanically efficient manner academic assembly lines

Examples of assembly-line in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Ford moved to its new Highland Park Plant in 1910 — the birthplace of the moving assembly line — selling the building to Studebaker in 1911. Free Press Staff Reports, Detroit Free Press, "Ford Piquette plant adds rare collection for Detroit auto show," 12 Jan. 2018 The headache now for the rest of pro cycling is that Sky’s assembly line has somehow produced another champion. Joshua Robinson, WSJ, "The Switcheroo That Won Team Sky the Tour de France," 29 July 2018 What was the assembly line like inside your facility? Chavie Lieber, Vox, "The human costs of Black Friday, explained by a former Amazon warehouse manager," 20 Nov. 2018 The late arrival of these parts caused a cascade of unfinished jobs to travel down the assembly lines. Dominic Gates, The Seattle Times, "Boeing finally begins to reduce its 737 delivery backlog," 9 Oct. 2018 Last-minute changes at one point in the assembly line risks causing unpredictable changes down the line. Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica, "Tesla is outgrowing Elon Musk," 29 Sep. 2018 If the shareholder lawsuits settle for anything like that amount, then Musk’s tweet was as bad as shutting down the assembly line for three months. Casey Newton, The Verge, "Google’s ambitions for China could trigger a crisis inside the company," 18 Aug. 2018 With the Model 3 far behind schedule, Tesla employees are working hard to completely rebuild a section on the electric sedan’s main assembly line. Russ Mitchell,, "Tesla drops reservation system, opens Model 3 orders to anybody," 10 July 2018 The world's first moving automotive assembly line begins operation at the Highland Park plant. Detroit Free Press, "Key moments in Ford, Detroit train station history," 16 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'assembly-line.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of assembly-line


1925, in the meaning defined above


1914, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about assembly-line

Share assembly-line

Statistics for assembly-line

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for assembly-line

The first known use of assembly-line was in 1914

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for assembly-line

assembly line


Kids Definition of assembly line

: an arrangement for assembling a product mechanically in which work passes from one operation to the next in a direct line until the product is finished

Comments on assembly-line

What made you want to look up assembly-line? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


excited commotion or publicity

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What did you just call me?! A Quiz

  • rows-of-various-emoji
  • If a member of the audience describes your speech as bombastic, does that person mean it is:
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!