DEARBORN, Michigan: Before the Ford Motor Company can focus on the production of smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles to improve its frail health, it must first endure the pain of a record $8.7 billion (€5.52bn; £4.35bn) loss in this year's second quarter.

The auto giant's numbers were even worse than expected, the result of layoff costs, and the slipping values both of assets and the sales worth of returned leased vehicles.

Many of the latter have realized less than estimated by Ford when drivers leased them a few years ago.

In addition to earlier proposals to cut SUV and pick-up production for the rest of 2008, the latest version of the company's oft-revamped turnaround plan will bring six small European models to North America, and transform three existing truck and SUV assembly plants to small cars.

Ceo Alan Mulally said the moves are designed to respond "to the rapidly changing business environment".

Data sourced from Financial Times Online; additional content by WARC staff