US car maker Ford has said its losses narrowed sharply in the first three months of this year to $282m. It attributed the improvement to progress in a painful re-organisation programme.

The results - which were better than analysts had expected - compared with  a loss of $1.4 billion in the same period a year ago.

Revenues for the January-March quarter increased by 5% to $43 billion, well ahead of market expectations.

The company said divisions such as Ford Europe, Ford South America and Mazda all were profitable and that cost-cutting programmes for North America were starting to help the results.