General Motors becomes first to sell 1 million vehicles in China

After setting a single month sales record in November, GM has now become the first automaker to sell 1 million vehicles in China in a single year.

General Motors - or Shanghai GM, to be more exact - has officially become the first passenger car manufacturer in history to sell 1 million vehicles in a single calender year.

For those who follow the Chinese auto market, it should come as a little surprise that the millionth vehicle sold was in fact a Buick. The Buick LaCrosse was purchased by Mr. Zhang Yun, who was presented a special key on behalf of Shanghai GM earlier today by the president of GM's Chinese operations, Ding Lei.

Showing that tastes can certainly vary by market, China's GM consumption varies drastically from that of Americans, with nearly 500,000 Buicks sold, just 490,000 Chevrolets and 16,000 Cadillacs sold in 2010.

GM lends its success in China to the use of eco-friendly technologies such as turbocharging and direct injection, as well as low-emission engines and six-speed transmissions. As a result, many of its products are segment leaders in performance, fuel efficiency and low emissions, which has in turn given Shanghai GM the largest number of models that benefit from the Chinese government's energy-saving vehicle subsidy plan.