The purpose of this study is to develop and evaluate a lung tumour interfraction geometric variability classification scheme as a means to guide adaptive radiotherapy and improve measurement of treatment response. Principal component analysis (PCA) was used to generate statistical shape models of the gross tumour volume (GTV) for 12 patients with weekly breath hold CT scans. Each eigenmode of the PCA model was classified as trending or non-trending depending on whether its contribution to the overall GTV variability included a time trend over the treatment course. Trending eigenmodes were used to reconstruct the original semi-automatically delineated GTVs into a reduced model containing only time trends. Reduced models were compared to the original GTVs by analyzing the reconstruction error in the GTV and position. Both retrospective (all weekly images) and prospective (only the first four weekly images) were evaluated. The average volume difference from the original GTV was 4.3% ± 2.4% for the trending model. The positional variability of the GTV over the treatment course, as measured by the standard deviation of the GTV centroid, was 1.9 ± 1.4 mm for the original GTVs, which was reduced to 1.2 ± 0.6 mm for the trending-only model. In 3/13 cases, the dominant eigenmode changed class between the prospective and retrospective models. The trending-only model preserved GTV and shape relative to the original GTVs, while reducing spurious positional variability. The classification scheme appears feasible for separating types of geometric variability by time trend.