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 |  Dec 30 2011, 5:45 PM

For the first time since 2007, just prior to the US economy tanking, and with things still spluttering along on many fronts, the new numbers are very encouraging from America’s second largest automaker.

As for where the biggest gains have been, Ford is reporting healthy demand for small cars, such as the B-segment Fiesta and the larger C-class Focus (shown), which look to post sales increases of some 20 percent for the year.

Light trucks have also been doing well, with the breadwinning F-150, along with the outgoing Escape and Explorer looking to post strong gains (current estimates predict around a 30 percent increase by the time all’s said and done), according to an official statement released by the company.

According to Ford’s US vice president for sales and marketing, Ken Czubay, “the industry sales rate has exceeded 13 million in each of the last three months.” He also believes that “the current momentum is not an aberration.”

Let’s hope he’s right. So far, following the announcement, investors seem to agree, as Ford stock rose 0.5 percent to $10.73 today, reversing a trend that has seen shares fall more than 30 percent so far this year.

[Source: The Detroit News]