Nissan had deliberately targeted the car at the European market. The Primera saw Nissan's multi-link front suspension applied to front-wheel drive for the first time. The 2.0-litre gasoline engine received a power upgrade in 1992 which gave the then eZX, (later renamed the eGT) 150 bhp from the standard 2.0-litre engine and a top speed of around 219 km/h (or 137 mph).
Some five-door UK Primeras were exported back to Japan, Russia and Ireland. In the United States, the Japanese-built version of the Primera was rebadged as the Infiniti G20, part of Nissan's upper-scale Infiniti brand. This version sold well in the Canadian market.
The Primera range came in six trim levels at launch: L, LS, LSX, GS, GSX and ZX. The 1.6-litre engine was available in L, LS and LSX trim and the 2.0-litre 115bhp (86kW; 117PS) engine was available in LS, GS and GSX trim. The ZX model had a 2.0-litre 150bhp (112kW; 152PS) engine. From 1992 onwards, the range was facelifted and new L, LX, SLX, SGX and eGT trim levels replaced the original naming scheme. A 2.0-litre diesel version was available from 1992. L cars were basic, and had the 1.6-litre petrol engine only. LX was slightly plusher, but 2.0-litre petrol and diesel versions were also available. SLX was the mid-range model, and this also had a choice of 1.6 and 2.0 petrol, or 2.0 diesel engines. The SGX trim level was the luxury specification version; powered by the 2.0-litre 115bhp (86kW; 117PS) engine. The eGT was the sporting version, with a 2.0-litre 150bhp (112kW; 152PS) engine. Engine power was slightly increased in mid-1993 with the 1.6 model now producing 102bhp (76kW; 103PS) and the 2.0 model, 123bhp (92kW; 125PS).
From 1994, the range received another facelift, and the trim levels were (almost) the same; although Equation replaced the basic L as the entry-level trim; like its predecessor, it had a 1.6 petrol engine, but there was no diesel option.
At this time, SE also replaced SGX. A new "hot hatch" version, the SRi joined the line-up from 1995, and this had a choice of 1.6- or 2.0-litre petrol engines.