Ford CEO Alan Mulally received a 2011 pay package of US$29.5m, the most in his six years in the position, the automaker disclosed in a regulatory filing.

Mulally’s earnings included $2m in salary, $5.5m in bonuses and about $21.4m in stock and option awards, the New York Times reported. The total value of his compensation rose 11% last year, when Ford made a $20.2bn net profit.

“We had a very good year last year,” Ford spokesman Jay Cooney told the paper. “The compensation committee felt that our exceptional performance in 2011 merited these compensation awards.”

Executive chairman William Clay Ford Jr received a package worth $14.5m in 2011, 45% less than the previous year. He earned a $2m salary, down from $4.8m, and fewer stock and option awards.

All of Ford’s top executives got smaller bonuses than in 2010 because even though profits increased significantly, the company fell short of some targets for the year, including those measuring vehicle quality and market share. Ford broke a string of quality improvements in 2011 as problems with a touch-screen system translated to poor ratings in a number of surveys, the report noted.

Departing chief financial officer Lewis Booth got $7.7m, down 6%. Americas chief Mark Fields earned $8.8m, about the same as in the previous year.

Mulally is the highest-paid executive in the auto industry, the report added.

Cooney told the paper Ford had posted three consecutive annual profits under Mulally’s leadership, and had reduced its debt by $27bn in the last two years. It also avoided having to join its domestic rivals, General Motors and Chrysler, in filing for bankruptcy.