Remy International, the manufacturer, remanufacturer and distributor of Delco Remy automotive electrical equipment, has reported record sales up 19.2% or $US59.8m to $372.2m in the first half of 2006.

Automotive OEM sales increased 36.5% primarily due to the continued ramp up of the alternator business and commodity price increases passed on to customers. Powertrain sales increased 36.9% due to a strong demand for diesel engine parts. Heavy duty OEM sales were up 6.6% while electrical aftermarket sales increased 8.7% due to unusually strong sales into the retail segment.

The company reported operating income of $12.9m for second quarter 2006, compared with an operating loss of $3.1m a year previously.

Net loss for the second quarter decreased $11.1m to $10.3m compared with a $21.4m net loss last year.

Operating income of $28.6m in H1 2006 increased $16.8m compared with H1 2005.

President and chief executive officer John Weber said: "I am pleased with the second quarter results, which also reflects two consecutive quarters of improvement being achieved in the fundamental performance of the business.

"Conditions in the electrical aftermarket business represent our largest challenge for the next six months."