General Motors Cruze Recall

General Motors has told its dealers to stop selling some 2013 and 2014 models of its popular Chevrolet Cruze compact cars, but won't say why. (David Zalubowski/Associated Press)

General Motors has told its dealers to stop selling some 2013 and 2014 models of its popular Chevrolet Cruze compact cars, but the automaker won't say why.

Dealers receive the stop-sale order in an email on Thursday. So far, no recall has been issued on cars already sold.

GM says the order to stop Cruze sales applies to 2013 and 2014 models equipped with a 1.4-litre gasoline-powered turbo engine. About 60 per cent of Cruze sales involve the 1.4-litre turbo engine. 

Stop-sale orders are not uncommon and are often given to address a safety issue. Stop-sale orders mean dealers must do something to the vehicles before they can be sold.

The move comes just a month after GM recalled 1.6 million older compact cars to fix an ignition switch problem linked to 31 crashes and 12 deaths.

GM has acknowledged it knew about the problem for at least a decade but did not recall the cars until last month.

"With GM still in the midst of trying to resolve the recall related to faulty ignition switches on the Chevrolet Cobalt and other legacy models. The last thing they need is a major issue with one of their current high volume production models, in this case, the Chevrolet Cruze," said Kelley Blue Book senior analyst Alec Gutierrez.‚Äč 

With files from The Associated Press and Reuters