click above to view 40 high-res images of the HUMMER H3T

Next month in Chicago, GM will finally pull the wraps off the 2009 HUMMER H3T pickup that's received an unceremonious early debut today thanks to Truck Trend. Built on a modified version of the H3's basic architecture, the H3T's 134-inch wheelbase is a whopping 22 inches longer than the 111.9-inch wheelbase found on its SUV sibling. Like the regular H3, both the 3.7L 5-cylinder and 5.3L V8 are available, the latter a part of the top-level Alpha trim. The H3T is a real truck with a separate bed, and is sized in-between the Canyon/Colorado and Silverado/Sierra. By comparison, the short-bed H2 SUT has the same basic dimensions as its enclosed stablemate and relies on an Avalanche-like midgate to create more cargo room.

No such problem exists with the H3T, whose cargo area has standard bedrails as well as additional storage compartments. As you'll see in the enclosed gallery, it can haul a dirt bike with no problem, and when equipped with the V8, it has a maximum towing capacity of 5,900 pounds. Two suspension packages will be offered, one oriented towards off-roading and another that's biased more toward on-road use and trailering. Inside, it's no different than the regular H3 in terms of comfort and instrumentation, and the rear seat of the crew-cab H3T flips down to provide an additional flat cargo space when necessary. Having driven both flavors of H3 as well as the H2 SUT, the H3T (particularly the Alpha) sounds like it might just be the pick of the litter, offering the best balance of power, comfort, and practicality to go with its off-road credentials. We can't wait to try one out for ourselves.

[Source: GM via Pickuptruck.com]

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