In my previous blog I mentioned that I’d been on a quick trip to Japan to get an insight into Infiniti’s preparations for finally getting a serious foothold in the global premium car market.

Aside from the brand briefing and the glimpse into the new-model future, the highlight of the 12,000 mile return trip was being able to walk through the Infiniti design studio. I can’t recall ever having been able to do this before, and especially not when the studio is in full working mode.

Obviously, I’m sworn to secrecy but I can tell you that the design studio is in Atsugi-Shi, Kanagawa, west of Tokyo, about halfway to Mount Fuji. It’s a very long, thin building on two levels. The design studios are on the upper level, looking over the clay modelling area on the ground floor and the viewing garden outside.

This long building is divided up into Nissan, Datsun and Infiniti design departments, which are walled off from each other. We took the long walk on the second floor to get into the Infiniti studio, which was at the far end of the building.

The corridor is lined with very large colour posters including supersize magazine-style layouts of the cars displayed at recent motor shows. Useful for the majority of designers who aren’t globe trotting.