GM halts sales of Chevrolet Cruze models

General Motors Co. has told its dealers to stop selling any Chevrolet Cruze cars equipped with 1.4-liter turbo engines on their lots.

The automaker did not provide any information why it issued the order. Automakers typically halt sales of a car if they learn of some safety defect. Sometimes it can be a minor issue that puts the model out of compliance with federal safety regulations.

The stop-sale order is for 2013 and 2014 model year Cruze sedans with the gasoline turbocharged engine, not the diesel version, said Alan Adler, a GM spokesman. It amounts to about a third of the Cruze inventory at Chevrolet dealers.

“No other details to share,” he said.

The Cruze is GM’s bestselling compact car in the U.S. It sold nearly 250,000 last year, making it one of the top-selling vehicles in America.

GM’s decision to halt sales of certain Cruzes comes as its deals with the fallout from recalling 1.6 million vehicles in the past two months to fix an ignition switch issue linked to at least 12 deaths. Documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicate that GM knew about the problem at least a decade ago but failed to recall the vehicles.

GM Chief Executive Mary Barra is scheduled to testify about the automaker’s actions at congressional hearings next week. Safety regulators and the Department of Justice have opened investigations into why the recalls were delayed.

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