Pepsi is taking caffeine rushes to a whole new level with its new soda-coffee hybrid.
Pepsi Cafe will arrive in twelve ounce cans this spring in two flavors: original and vanilla. These new beverages contain twice the caffeine amount of a regular can of Pepsi. The drink was made with those who may enjoy the taste of coffee and carbonation in mind. Although the drink will only be available for a limited time in 2020, it is the first coffee-soda hybrid to be released in the United States. Pepsi’s top competitor, Coca-Cola, has a drink of its own—Coke Plus Coffee—available in several international offices, but not yet released in the states. Pepsi has also made attempts in the past to release coffee-soda drinks internationally, including with the brand’s Pepsiccino—a creamy cappuccino-esque drink—in 2004, and the Pepsi-Kona, a morning beverage the brand released in the late 1990’s. With the help of social media, Pepsi hopes the popularity of Pepsi Cafe will far surpass that of its two predecessors. Pepsi currently dominates on Instagram—the brand has had almost two million interactions on the platform in the past year, according to a Gartner L2 report.
The brand has spent over a year and a half developing the Pepsi Cafe, taking inspiration from both the Pepsiccino and Pepsi-Kona to bring a whole new drink to fans. The drink is coming at a time when soda consumption has been on an annual decline in the U.S. as consumer preferences continue to change. However, the American markets have seen the desire for mixed beverages surge—take alcoholic seltzer, for example—and Pepsi may be hoping consumers are finally ready to get on board its coffee-soda trend.
Pepsi is hoping to give fans a nice afternoon pick-me-up with the introduction of Pepsi Cafe. Brands looking to introduce functional refreshments may look to Pepsi for innovative ideas to stay relevant in the changing beverage market.