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General Motors Co. is adding a second shift at its assembly plant in Bowling Green, Kentucky to support production of the new mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette.

The move will add 400 jobs at the assembly plant, which already builds the current versions of the Corvette. The plant will now employ 1,300 workers.

The long-awaited mid-engine Corvette is to debut July 18 at a yet-to-be-disclosed event. GM CEO Mary Barra showed off a camo-covered model ahead of the New York International Auto Show earlier this month. Barra drove the supercar through Manhattan to the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square.

"The Corvette's iconic status owes so much to the men and women of Bowling Green, where it has been built exclusively for almost 40 years," Barra said in a Thursday statement. "This is the workforce that can deliver a next generation Corvette worthy of both its historic past and an equally exciting future, and today's announcement gets us one step closer to its reveal on July 18."

The shift addition at Bowling Green comes as GM is executing a series of production stops at five plants in North America. Lordstown Assembly in Ohio was the first to shutter last month when the last Chevrolet Cruze rolled down the assembly line.

GM at the same time is investing $300 million to build a new electric Chevrolet at its small car plant in Orion Township, adding jobs at Flint Assembly and investing in retooling at Lansing Delta Assembly and Romulus Powertrain.

"UAW members in Bowling Green fully support the investment by GM at the Bowling Green Assembly," UAW Vice President and director of the GM department Terry Dittes said in a Thursday statement. "We hope to see more of this in the future from GM, which is good for our members, their families, the community, and all of America.

nnaughton@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @NoraNaughton

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