Beating analyst expectations, Ford posted a $2.08 (€1.56) billion profit in the first quarter of 2010. Full coverage inside.

Beating analyst expectations, Ford posted a $2.08 (€1.56) billion profit in the first quarter of 2010.

The company was only expected to earn $1 billion (€752 million), so 2.08 (€1.56) billion is downright astounding. This is due, in part, to Ford's largest quarterly gain (of 2.7%) in U.S. market share since 1977.

While that sounds nice and rosy, Ford Europe only posted a pre-tax operating profit of $107 (€80.5) million - despite being the best selling brand in Europe with a 9.4% market share. More importantly, the earnings exclude Volvo (due to the sale to Geely) which likely had major losses.

According to CEO Alan Mulally, "The Ford team around the world achieved another very solid quarter, and we are delivering profitable growth. Our plan is working, and the basic engine that drives our business results - products, market share, revenue and cost structure - is performing stronger each quarter, even as the economy and vehicle demand remain relatively soft."

Mulally's statement was echoed by Lewis Booth, Ford's CEO and executive vice president, who said, "We are seeing the benefits of our One Ford plan around the world. All of our business operations - North America, South America, Europe, Asia Pacific Africa and Ford Credit - were not only profitable, but also showed substantially improved results over a year ago."

Going forward, Ford expects full-year 2010 U.S. auto sales to be in the range of 11.5 to 12.5 million units. European sales will likely total 14 to 15 million units, higher than previous expectations.

Check out the press release for additional information.

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