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Fiat doubles profits

The Fiat Group has more than doubled its net profits in the first quarter of 2007 to €358 million (£242.9m) from €138m (£93.7m) a year ago.

The Italian manufacturer said also halved its net debt forecast to below €1 billion (£678m). Fist-quarter revenues rose by 9% to €13.7bn (£9.3bn), with all Fiat Group businesses recording sales increased year on year.

Fiat is now targeting a group trading profit of between €2.5bn (£1.7bn) and €2.7 billion (£1.8bn) this year, and a net profit of between €1.6bn (£1.1bn) and €1.8 billion (£1.2bn).

Fiat Auto revenues increased for the sixth successive quarter, by 11% to €6.8bn (£4.6bn), and Iveco’s by 20% to €2.5 billion (£1.7bn).

Fiat's new Cinquecento mini will be launched on July 4. Fiat said it had so far received 29,000 orders for its new Bravo C-segment model, against a global full-year target of 70,000 units in 2007 and 120,000 in 2008.

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