Red is a popular color for Ford(NYSE: F). Its classic sports car, the Mustang, looks hot in red. So do its rugged F-150 pick-up trucks. The auto maker's earnings are no different, expectedly sporting red once again this year.

The company lost $130 million, or $0.07 a share, in its fourth quarter, including charges. That's narrower than Ford's huge $5.07 billion ($2.81-a-share) loss last year, when it embarked full force into its restructuring plan.

Revenues inched up to $41.58 billion from $40.71 billion during the quarter. Higher vehicle prices offset a 1.2% drop in the number of worldwide units sold.

Stripping out Ford's charges, it turned a profit for the period, earning $150 million, or $0.08 a share. That was enough to top estimates by a penny.

For the entire year, revenues were $162.6 billion, up from $160.8 billion. The company lost $980 million, or $0.55 a share. In 2001, it lost $5.45 billion, or $3.02 a share.

Ford's worldwide automotive division reported a quarterly loss of $191 million, much better than the $803 million it lost a year ago. The credit unit of the company, on the other hand, reported substantially higher profits of $382 million.

It's still a long road ahead for Ford, though, as it seeks to compete more effectively with rival General Motors(NYSE: GM). GM recently reported strong earnings and a gain in market share, while Ford's market share slipped during the year. GM is also winning the price war. Its car and truck prices for 2002 were lower than Ford's, on average, but it moved more vehicles that way.

Ford believes that good things are in store for 2003, however. It expects U.S. demand will be 16.5 million vehicles, and is upping its production accordingly. It now intends to turn out 1.035 million cars and trucks during the first quarter, an increase of 25,000 from its previous production plans. The higher output, coupled with accelerated cost cuts, should result in a $0.20-per-share profit for the first quarter. Analysts were expecting $0.06 a share.