Volkswagen China said Friday that its auto sales rose 17.7 percent year-on-year to hit 2.26 million units in 2011. The figure was 3.4 percentage points higher than the global sales growth of the German-based Volkswagen Group, making China the company\'s largest overseas market for the third straight year. The growth was bolstered by strong performances by the company\'s two Chinese joint ventures -- Shanghai Volkswagen and FAW-Volkswagen. Despite a slowdown in China\'s auto market, Shanghai Volkswagen\'s sales surged 24.4 percent year-on-year to hit 1.16 million units last year, while FAW-Volkswagen\'s sales reached 1.02 million. China\'s auto sales saw their slowest growth in 13 years in 2011, with output and sales of passenger cars up by only 4.23 percent and 5.19 percent, respectively, according to data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers. Volkswagen\'s global sales reached 8.16 million units in 2011, up 14.3 percent from a year earlier.