China: GM auto sales down 1.8 percent in July image

General Motors, world largest automaker sold 173,398 vehicles in China in July, down 1.8 percent from a year earlier.

But Buick sales rose 15 percent to 50,265 units, while Chevrolet deliveries gained 17 percent to 46,154, according to the statement.

Sales at FAW-GM, a commercial vehicle joint venture with FAW Group, fell 39.7% to 3,353 units, while sales at SAIC-GM-Wuling, a small commercial minivan joint venture with Shanghai Automotive Industry Corp. and Liuzhou Wuling Motors, fell 14% from a year earlier to 77,944 units, the automaker said.

General Motors Co expects to conclude a deal to bring the automaker’s stake in its China joint venture back to 50 percent, Reuters reported Thursday, citing Chief Executive Daniel Akerson.

“We have the right to the option to purchase back that 1 percent and we’ve expressed that,” Akerson told financial analysts on a conference call after GM reported second-quarter results.

China’s auto sales have slowed from the record 32 percent gain last year after the government phased out incentives and imposed ownership restrictions to curb traffic congestion. The nation overtook the U.S. as the world’s largest car market in 2009.

General Motors Co (GM) outsold Toyota Motor Corp globally in the first six months tobecome the world’s largest automaker after the March 11 earthquake disrupted production inJapan.