NEW YORK – The ’05 Cadillac STS, plus at least 20 other production vehicles and concepts, will make worldwide debuts at the 2004 New York International Auto Show that opens to the public on April 9.

Among models joining the CTS are the Saab 9-7X SUV, Lincoln's ’06 midsize sedan, an all-new Land Rover and new concepts from Acura and Lexus.

The show, held at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, is the largest publicly attended auto exhibit in the country, and more than 1 million visitors are expected this year.

Cadillac STS

The STS, which goes on sale in September, will be offered in rear- or all-wheel-drive configurations and shares its Sigma platform with the Cadillac CTS and SRX. The STS will offer a choice of a V-6 or V-8 engine and is targeted to compete against the European and Japanese luxury cars that dominate the luxury sedan segment today.

Saab Automobile's first truck is derived from the same architecture as the Chevrolet TrailBlazer and GMC Envoy. However, the 9-7X has many of the Swedish brand’s styling and engineering cues, including an ignition lock on the center console. Saab says it could increase its annual sales volume by at least 25% with the 9-7X. (See related story: Fast Development Time Essential for Saab 9-7X)

General Motors Corp.’s Buick Div. will roll out the Velite, a 4-passenger convertible concept based on an all-new fullsize rear-drive platform in the works at GM.

Buick executives say feedback from the New York show could figure greatly as to whether GM gives the go ahead for production. Buick has not had a 4-seat convertible since the ’85 Riviera. However, it has shown other concept convertibles since then that never made it into production.

Lincoln will premiere its ’06 midsize sedan. It will be the brand's first vehicle off the Mazda6 architecture.

Also on hand will be a Mustang concept based on the upcoming ’05 model shown in January in Detroit, as well as a production-ready Escape Hybrid.

Land Rover will reveal the 7-seat LR-3 SUV that features Range Rover styling in a more compact package.

New York also will mark the world debut of the revamped Jeep Grand Cherokee and a freshened Jeep Liberty with a diesel engine option, both on tap for the ’05 model year. Chrysler Group is using the Liberty to determine whether there is demand for diesels in the U.S. An identical vehicle, badged the Jeep Cherokee, already is on sale in Europe with the same VM Motori SpA diesel engine.

The Lexus LF-C sports coupe making its debut is said to be a near-production version of the brand's next-generation IS, which likely will bow as an ’06 model. Lexus is expected to offer the car in several body styles that will compete with BMW 3-Series models.

Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. will offer a first look at the ’05 Xterra SUV and exhibit the first SE-R version of the ’05 Altima. Its Infiniti luxury division will introduce a new M45 concept and the "redefined” ’05 Q45.

Honda Motor Co. Ltd.’s Acura plans a reveal of an RL sedan concept, reportedly with all-wheel drive as an option. Last year Acura used the New York show to unveil a concept TL that turned out to be close to the production car. It's expected that will be the case for the RL, as well.

Kia Motors Corp. will unveil a 5-door Spectra, while Suzuki Motor Corp. will introduce its Forenza wagon.