Former Shanghai GM general manager may help develop Apple Cars in China

Take this one with a big grain of salt, but Auto Sina — the auto news section of Sina.com, an online media company based in China — says Apple may appoint Ding Lei, former general manager of Shanghai General Motors and vice president of SAIC Motor, as the director of its vehicle production project in China. This will only accelerate the Apple Car rumors, which continue to pick up speed.

The article, citing an unnamed "person familiar with the matter," says Apple has been looking for a site for its office in Beijing over the last month for its auto project. The director has already arrived from Shanghai to build the team, claims Auto Sina (as noted by BrightWire.com, a global investment newswire.)

Ding worked at Shanghai GM between 2004 and 2011, helping the company boost its sales to 1.03 million units in 2010 from the 250,000 in 2004, the article says. The company topped China's auto companies in annual sales for four times during the six years.