Nissan’s premium Infiniti brand has for most of its life been sold exclusively in North America and is only now expanding into markets, namely Europe. Nissan is now hoping to sell its more upmarket models in other markets but the decision to expand the Infiniti brand is an expensive one and one the carmaker is not yet willing to take.

Nissan is debating whether to sell the Infiniti brand in other markets but is hesitating because of the current downturn in the market. There are also fears that the brand may not be accepted as a true rival for some of European’s premium brands. This is especially the case in Japan, where rival carmaker Toyota is struggling to promote its Lexus luxury brand. Instead, Nissan is testing the waters with a new brand simply called ‘Nissan Premium Factory’.

The new marketing approach was launched this week in Japan and is aimed at positioning certain Nissan models more upmarket. The initial Nissan Premium Factory lineup includes the Murano SUV, Elgrand MPV, Fuga luxury saloon, the Skyline Coupe (pictured), which incidentally is sold in other markets as the Infiniti G37, as well as the upcoming 370Z sports car.

There are no plans to bring the new brand outside of Japan just yet, but Nissan’s Japanese marketing chief Tetsuo Shimada explained, during a recent interview with Automotive News, if the project proves successful it may be adopted in other markets.

"I have discussed this several times with the marketing guys, especially in the United States, and they have the Infiniti," Shimada said. "Still, they are quite keen to know what will happen in Japan."