JCB has hailed the most successful year in the company's history. The Staffordshire manufacturer marked its diamond anniversary with a hat trick of success boosted by a broader model range.
And early indications are that 2006 will be an even bigger year for JCB, with production figures already thought to be ahead of last year.
JCB chairman, Sir Anthony Bamford, said: "Last year was, without doubt, the most successful in JCB's history, when we set new records for profitability, production and turnover."
In the company's 60th anniversary year, JCB pretax profits in the year December 31 rose to #110 million, double the figure for 2004.
Global production rose to more than 45,000 machines, 21 per cent of 2004, while sales rose by 23 per cent to #1.42 billion.
Meanwhile market share increased from 8.6 to 9.6 per cent, which helped the Rocester firm move up the world rankings for construction equipment manufacturers, from fifth to fourth place by volume.
JCB retained its world number one position in the backhoe loader market.
As a result of increased production, the number of people employed by JCB rose by more than 600 throughout 2005 to 6,300.
A total of 400 of those new jobs were created in the UK, mainly in Staffordshire where the company employs 4,300 people at sites in Rugeley, Rocester, Uttoxeter and Cheadle.
Among the new products which sold well were new giant 46-ton excavators and smaller, mini excavators which range in size from one to seven tons.
Last year saw huge increases in production of JCB's fuel efficient diesel engine, manufactured in Derbyshire.