New Boeing Plane Name May Be Subtle PR Move

737 Max is called 737-8 in new announcement from Boeing, but it's not clear if that's an official rebrand
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 20, 2020 11:10 AM CDT
Boeing Uses New Name for 737 Max
A Boeing 737 Max jet heads to a landing at Boeing Field following a test flight on June 29, 2020, in Seattle.   (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Boeing announced an order Wednesday from Polish airline Enter Air for up to four 737-8 airplanes, with the airline's general director asserting he's "convinced it will be the best aircraft in the world for many years to come." For those curious what this new jet is all about, it's not new, and it's got another name you might be more familiar with: the beleaguered 737 Max, which was involved in two deadly crashes in 2018 and 2019 and has had a slew of issues since. The Guardian notes that up until now, the 737-8 name has been used only inside the company itself.

USA Today—which notes the decision to use the 737-8 label publicly may be a PR move to clean up the image of the aircraft—points out the name "737 Max" was also used several times in the same Boeing statement, and that no official name change has been announced. But the quiet sort-of rebranding did catch the eye of industry watchers. "The aircraft family is still the Max, but Boeing calls the model the 737-8 for the first time in a deal an announcement," tweeted Jon Ostrower of the Air Current aviation site. CNN Business notes this is the first order for 737 Max jets since November, when Boeing booked 30 orders for the aircraft at the Dubai Airshow, 10 of which went to Turkey's SunExpress fleet. (Read more Boeing stories.)

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