General Motors plans to sell its global steering business, formerly owned by supplier group Delphi, to Beijing-based Pacific Century Motors in one of the biggest sales of an auto-parts business to a Chinese company.

In a statement late Wednesday, GM said it would sell the business, known as Nexteer Automotive, to PCM, an entity formed by the Tempo Group and E-Town, an affiliate of Beijing's municipal government. No financial details of the transaction were disclosed.

GM acquired Nexteer from Delphi last year as part of a deal to help the group exit bankruptcy. The U.S. carmaker last year told its suppliers that it would sell the business when market conditions improved.

Nexteer, based in Michigan, employs 6,200 people and makes electric power steering, hydraulic power steering, steering columns, and driveline halfshafts for more than 60 customers in North and South America, Europe, and Asia.

Stephen J. Girsky, GM's head of strategy and business development, said in a statement that the sale "better enables Nexteer to take advantage of anticipated growth in the global auto industry with a variety of automakers."

Girsky said: "Ultimately, it's a move we believe will make it a more vibrant and healthier business".

E-Town is a state-owned enterprise that serves as the financing arm of the Beijing municipal government.

Tempo, headquartered in Beijing, makes parts for chassis, powertrain and driveline systems. It has an engineering center in Detroit and sells its products in North America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.