A product onslaught drove Chrysler back into the black in 2011 and the ambitious US automaker said Wednesday it aims to multiply its profits by eight times in 2012.
Chrysler's full year net income rose to $183 million from a $652 million loss in 2010, thanks to fourth quarter earnings of $225 million -- the best results since Chrysler emerged from a 2009 government-backed bankruptcy under the direction of Italy's Fiat.
It forecast that net income would jump to around $1.5 billion in 2012 as revenues rise to $65 billion from $55 billion in 2011 and $42 billion in 2010.
"The house is in good order. We are proud of the work we've done," said Sergio Marchionne, chairman and chief executive of Chrysler and Fiat.
"Now we greet a new year of high expectations with our heads down, forging ahead and focused on executing the goals we've set for ourselves as a company."
Chrysler's results accounted for all of Fiat's profits this year, but that is not a "long-term solution" to the Italian automaker's problems, Marchionne said in a conference call.
Chrysler paid down its debt to the US and Canadian governments in the second quarter -- six years earlier than planned -- which resulted in a $551 million charge.
That allowed Fiat to expand its ownership stake in the third largest US automaker to 58.5 percent.
Global vehicle sales rose 22 percent to 1.9 million in 2012, driven by a 43 percent jump in US retail sales that pushed Chrysler's share of the key US market up 1.3 points to 10.5 percent.
Chrysler also reported a 44 percent jump in US sales in January to 101,149, the group's best January performance since 2008.
"Chrysler is the surprising comeback kid -- again," said Edmunds.com analyst Michelle Krebs.
"When Chrysler emerged from bankruptcy, there were plenty of skeptics, but the automaker has proven them wrong."
Since detailing its plan for the future in November 2009, Chrysler has done everything it said it would, creating an impressive recent track record and providing confidence that it will meet its 2012 goals."