General Motors saw profits more than double in the second quarter, attributing the rise to “improved retail sales performance, increased production in North America and a continued focus on cost reduction.”

The world’s biggest vehicle manufacturer posted net earnings of $1.3 billion (€1.3bn; £0.8bn) in the three months to July, up from $477 million in Q2 2001, while sales climbed from $44.2bn to $46bn.

In more good news for the auto giant, its share of the US car and truck market increased from 27.3% last year to 28.1%.

However, GM announced it would miss cost-cutting targets for its loss-making European arm after weak sales. It wants to move the division, based around its Adam Opel brand, back into the black within two years, but said 2002 losses would not reduce by the $350m hoped for.

Data sourced from: BBC Online News; additional content by WARC staff