NEW YORK (AP) _ Gulf & Western Industries Inc. said it has reached an agreement in principle to sell its consumer and industrial products group to Wickes Cos. for about $1 billion cash.

In addition, Gulf & Western said Sunday it will receive a five-year option to purchase 10 million shares of common stock in the Santa Monica, Calif.- based Wickes, at $6 a share.

The sale includes Kayser Roth, an apparel and hosiery company; Simmons, a bedding and home furnishings business; A.P.S., which stands for automotive parts distribution, and G&W Manufacturing, which produces automotive, electronic and construction products.

These companies are expected to have combined sales in the current fiscal year, which ends July 31, of $2.7 billion, and operating income of slightly more than $200 million before expenses, according to a news release from Gulf & Western.

The transaction is subject to a definitive agreement, approval of the boards of directors of both companies, and government OK, the release said.

''This sale substantially completes the company's restructuring program launched in 1983 and reflects our continuing commitment to sharpen the focus of Gulf & Western on the business areas we believe can generate higher returns and accelerate growth,'' Martin S. Davis, G&W's chairman and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

Gulf & Western will use proceeds from the divestiture ''to finance new opportunities in those areas the company has targeted for growth - entertainment and communications, publishing and information resources, and financial services.'' Some of the proceeds will also be used to retire debt and possibly to repurchase its own stock, the release said.

Wickes filed for protection under Chapter 11 of the bankruptcy code in 1982, and emerged from those proceedings in January.