Your gut feelings mimic very much what I am thinking Brodo
It wouldn't surprise to see that they come from the drawing boards with a new 100% original (at least bodywork/cosmetical) design... that reflects the HONDA corporate image, and not borrow from what the others have done before.
Interesting subject that you touched on concerning personel/management of the team. I wouldn't think that the only
"recruiting" HRC is doing at the moment, is soley on the riding staff side of things.
But it surprises me - as you mention - of the reported claim that the HRC effort will be run "through" another team (Dutch or otherwise). That broadly describes the way in which the various Honda.Europe (Spanish, Dutch, HM/Arcarons etc.) satellite efforts of the last few years have been set up, with varying degrees of support from the mother corporation.
But if history is anything to go by... when the HRC
initials are put into play... that means 100% Japanese funding/control. That is not to say that they wouldn't recruit experienced team management and logistics/mechanic support personel from (one of) these established teams and put them on the payroll... But as far as where the buck stops, (if MotoGP/500cc history is anything to go by), the big decisions would be coming fairly and squarely; directly from the land of the rising sun - one would imagine...
So I agree entirely with the last line you wrote (above); it should make for some interesting "back room negotiations"
between now and January 2013...