General Motors Corp. confirms it will spend $73 million to prep its Shreveport, LA, assembly plant for the launch of the all-new Hummer H3T.

The H3T, which was first shown in concept form at the Los Angeles auto show in 2004, is a cross between a pickup truck and an SUV and slots in size between GM’s Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon midsize pickups and the fullsize Chevrolet Silverado/GMC Sierra.

Addition of the new Hummer model will retain 363 jobs related to Hummer assembly at the plant, a spokeswoman says. The facility currently employs 2,100 hourly workers on two shifts.

GM declines to say when it plans to begin production of the new model, which is slated to hit dealer showrooms by third-quarter 2008.

“GM’s $73 million investment in Shreveport is further proof that the community remains an important part of GM’s manufacturing plan,” GM North America President Troy Clarke says.

Future product plans GM supplied to the United Auto Workers as part of the new 4-year contract reached earlier indicate Shreveport will drop production of the Colorado/Canyon midsize pickups and continue with output of only the Hummer H3 models after 2011.