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Ford cuts losses

Ford has cut its first quarter losses from $1.4 billion (£703m) to $282 million (£141.4m).

Ford's first-quarter revenue was $43bn (£21.6bn), up from $40.8bn (£20.5bn) a year ago.

The improved results were due to soaring European profits, which rose to $219 m (£110m) compared to $65m (£32.6m) during Q1 2006.

"We are making progress on executing the four priorities of our plan – restructuring the company, accelerating product development, funding our plan and working effectively as one team," said president and CEO Alan Mulally.

"I am pleased that the basics of our business are improving, but we still have a lot of work to do.

“Our first quarter results came in somewhat stronger than expected, but there are many uncertainties going forward. We remain focused on improving our quality, productivity and business performance," said Mulally.

On a pre-tax basis, worldwide automotive sector losses in the first quarter were $225m (£113m).

That compares with a pre-tax loss of $203m (£102m) during the same period a year ago.

The Premier Automotive Group (PAG) reported a record pre-tax profit of $402m (£202m) for the first quarter, compared with a pre-tax profit of $152m (£76.3m) for the same period in 2006. First-quarter 2007 revenue was up slightly to $8.4bn (£4.2m), compared with $7.1bn (£3.6bn) a year ago.

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