By Daniel Hunter

The man who is widely credited with with Ford during the recession has announced he is retiring.

Alan Mulally will retire in July at the age of 68. He will be replaced by Ford's chief operating officer, Mark Fields, who has been with the US car maker since 1989.

Ford's chairman, Bill Ford, said Mr Mulally has been a "hall of fame" chief executive. "There are very few people that brought his skill set, his humility, and his humanity to the job," said Mr Ford.

In a statement, the company said he will be remembered for "one of the most successful business turnarounds in history".

Under Alan's leadership, Ford has reported a profit for five consecutive years. And Ford was just one of just three US car manufacturers which didn't require a government bailout during the height of the financial crisis.

Mr Mulally's retirement doesn't come as a shock, after he last year revealed that he planned to retire in 2014.

Bill Ford said Mark Fields is more than up to the task of leading Ford.

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