Lemon Diet Coke variant to launch for UK consumers

Coca-Cola is set to launch a lemon-flavoured variant of Diet Coke in the UK. The decision follows a similar launch in the US last year and mounting speculation that Coke is developing a vanilla-flavoured cola to revive its flagging US market share.

Coca-Cola has briefed ad agency Wieden & Kennedy to develop a £5m advertising and promotions campaign for June.

The soft drinks giant, which has been losing share recently to arch-rival Pepsi, launched a 'lemon-tinged' Diet Coke in the US last year to take on Pepsi Twist, a lemon-flavoured Pepsi drink.

However, the British variant has been formulated for a much stronger lemon flavour than its US counterpart.

The design for the new drink was created by Dew Gibbons Design.

Launched in 1982, Diet Coke has proven a major success for Coke. But the firm has since had its share of disastrous attempts at innovation, including the 1985 introduction of Cherry Coke and New Coke, the sugary new formula that had to be abandoned following a popular outcry.

A Coca-Cola spokeswoman said the company had no plans to launch a vanilla Coke variant in the UK and could not confirm that the drink was in development for the US market.

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