Coca-Cola Unveils U.S. Launch Plans for its New Lower-Carb, Lower-Cal Cola, Coca-Cola C2

LOS ANGELES, May 24 /PRNewswire/ — As the rock ‘n’ roll classic by The Rolling Stones goes, “You can’t always get what you want.” Until now.

Coca-Cola C2, with half the carbohydrates, calories and sugar of regular cola, and “all the great taste” of Coca-Cola, today was introduced to the United States at festivities in Los Angeles, featuring appearances by Paula Abdul and Ryan Seacrest. The Coca-Cola Company unveiled marketing plans for the new soft drink, that include the debut of a television commercial during the finals of American Idol on FOX this Tuesday and Wednesday. The ad uses the Stones’ “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.”

A second ad featuring “I Want to Break Free” by Queen will hit the air in July. Both ads show people enjoying spontaneous, liberating moments in life, representing the freedom to enjoy a cola with fewer carbs and calories without compromising on taste.

“We’re responding again to what our consumers are telling us they want,” said Don Knauss, president and chief operating officer, Coca-Cola North America. “Today’s consumers are looking for choices that fit their lifestyles. They want to keep enjoying the special cola taste that Coca-Cola delivers, but with the option of a lower-carb, lower-cal soft drink. Coca-Cola C2 gives that freedom of choice.”

Experiential sampling teams will hit the streets this week to offer people their first taste of Coca-Cola C2, with first stops in Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta, Chicago and Miami. Employees of the Coca-Cola system across the U.S. also will be given a case of Coca-Cola C2 to share with family and friends. In total, more than 12 million samples of the soft drink are expected to be handed out during the launch.

The new brand will begin showing up on store shelves across the U.S. in early June. Coca-Cola C2 was first unveiled to consumers in Japan on May 18, and will be available there on June 7.

An integrated marketing campaign will support the U.S. roll-out, including television, radio, outdoor, cinema and Internet advertising. Advertising will carry the tagline “Half the carbs. Half the cals. All the great taste.”

The packaging graphics feature the familiar Coca-Cola trademark in black on a “Coca-Cola red” background, to provide a distinctive visual difference between Coca-Cola C2 and the flagship brand, Coca-Cola classic. Some packages will carry a special silver foil label, to enhance the design and distinction. Original point-of-sale merchandising featuring additional graphics also has been developed for in-store activation.

Coca-Cola C2 will be available immediately in 20-ounce PET bottles and 12-ounce cans, including special 8 and 18-can multi-packs. Coca-Cola C2 also will be offered at fountain soon after the launch of the bottle/can packaging.

In the past two years, The Coca-Cola Company has introduced four new products in the cola category — Vanilla Coke (2002), Diet Vanilla Coke (2002), Diet Coke with Lemon (2001), and, most recently, Diet Coke with Lime (2004).

Coca-Cola is the best-known and best-selling soft drink in the world. Diet Coke — known in some countries as Coca-Cola Light — is number one in the diet category, and the third best-selling soft drink overall worldwide.

The Coca-Cola Company is the world’s largest beverage company. Along with Coca-Cola, the Company markets four of the world’s top five soft drink brands, including Diet Coke, Fanta and Sprite, and a wide range of other beverages, including diet and light soft drinks, waters, juices and juice drinks, teas, coffees and sports drinks. Through the world’s largest distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy the Company’s beverages at a rate exceeding one billion servings each day. For more information about The Coca-Cola Company, visit