I was looking at the ad for the A350 in last weeks AW&ST. Airbus seem to be doing their utmost to convince everyone that this is a completely new aircraft and the most advanced airliner available. But it looks completely like an A330. How will I know I am looking at an A350 without counting windows or reading the markings if they are on the plane?
Will anything be different or is this simply a marketing trick to try and create the perception that the A350 isn't just an update to existing A330? When the 737 got a new wing, it still stayed a 737. Even the fuselage was substantially redesigned and retooled (although it looks the same).
Ever since I was a little kid way back in the late 60's I have taken pride in being able to identify every single airliner simply by glancing at it. I can immediately tell a 720 from a 707 and an MD-80 from an DC-9 for instance. There are lots of questionably "all new" aircraft but this one seems to be really stretching things.
(Back when I was in marketing, a trick we employed to try and convince the market that something that wasn't really true was true was to claim it over and over repetatively till people believed us anyway - I am amused by the repeating ad in AW&ST where they keep repeating the claim that the A350 is the most technologically advanced airliner in the world. They must have read the same textbook.)