Pepsi Challenge Hits The Airwaves

MTV's Ananda Lewis Challenges Millions of Americans:
"Let Your Taste Decide"

PURCHASE, NY, June 14, 2001 - As the Pepsi Challenge sweeps through hundreds of cities and towns across America, millions of consumers are letting their taste decide their favorite cola. Starting Monday, a series of commercials will ask those who have not yet done so to make the choice. In the new commercials, created by BBDO New York, MTV Veejay Ananda Lewis challenges all of America to take the Pepsi Challenge. In a national commercial, which debuts on June 18, she reminds consumers from a beach party atmosphere that the Pepsi Challenge is sweeping the nation. A complementary slate of 27 regional spots featuring real taste-test takers begins airing June 25.

"Ever since 1975, we've been trying to make it clear that consumers have a choice among colas," said Dawn Hudson, senior vice president, strategy and marketing, Pepsi-Cola North America. "And this year, Ananda Lewis - a lifelong Pepsi drinker - is helping us localize that message. The local spots, with real people from the 27 local areas, will remind people that the Pepsi Challenge could be right around the corner - so give it a try." Many consumers remember when the Pepsi Challenge first grew into a national phenomenon in the mid-1970s and early 1980s. Making its return in 2000 after a 17-year hiatus, the Pepsi Challenge roared through the U.S. and asked consumers a very simple question: Which cola do you prefer? And, what was true then still resonates today - nationwide, more people prefer the taste of Pepsi.

The essence of administering the Pepsi Challenge as a blind taste test has never changed. This summer, it will continue to make its way to malls, fairs, amusement parks, beaches, ballparks and other high-traffic areas across the country. On Pepsi's website,, consumers can take the home version of the Challenge, view the new Pepsi Challenge commercials and behind-the-scenes footage and consult an interactive map to find the Challenge closest to them. Those who attend the Challenge can retrieve photos of themselves taken at the Challenge or look at the Challenge photo album.

Pepsi-Cola Company (, headquartered in Purchase, N.Y., is the global beverage division of PepsiCo, Inc ( Its brands in the United States include Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Pepsi ONE, Mountain Dew, Mountain Dew Code Red, Mug, Slice, Wild Cherry Pepsi, SoBe, Dole single-serve juices, Aquafina, and FruitWorks. The company also makes and markets the country's #1 ready-to-drink iced teas and coffees, respectively, via joint ventures with Lipton and Starbucks.


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