Mitsubishi Motors has reported its first profits for four years.

For the fiscal year ending March 31, 2007, consolidated sales were 2,203bn yen, an increase of 3.9% over the previous year. In a statement Mitsubishi said that favorable yen exchange rates and a more profitable model mix more than offset decreases in retail sales volume and in the OEM supply volume resulting from the ending of the production of the smart forfour.

Mitsubishi Motors posted an operating profit of 40.2bn yen, an improvement of 33.4bn yen over the previous fiscal year. This stemmed from a more favourable exchange rate, a more profitable model mix and from improved profitability of financial service operations in the US.

Mitsubishi Motors posted an ordinary profit of 18.5bn yen, a year-on-year gain of 36.3bn yen that stemmed partly from an improvement in net interest income. The company reported a net income of 8.7bn yen, an improvement of 100.9bn yen.

These results mark the first time Mitsubishi Motors has moved into the black at all levels (operating, ordinary and net profits) for the full financial year since fiscal 2002.

Global retail sales of vehicles during the financial year totaled 1,232,000 vehicles, a decrease of 112,000 (8.3%) compared to the 1,344,000 sold in fiscal 2005.

For 2007 the company is aiming to increase sales by 7.4% to 1,323,000 units. The growth will be driven mainly the launch of the new Outlander and the new Lancer.

As a result of higher sales Mitsubishi Motors forecasts net sales of 2,430bn yen, a 10.3% increase oer the 2006 financial year. Mitsubishi Motors forecasts an ordinary profit of 30 billion yen, a year-on-year increase of 62.2%, and a full-year net profit of 20 billion yen, a 2.3-fold increase over fiscal 2006.