With a modern look and fresh lineup of flavors that sounds like it was plucked from a hip cocktail bar menu, America’s top no-calorie beverage brand is setting its sights on a new generation of drinkers.

The Millennial-inspired Diet Coke refresh includes the rollout of four bold varieties – Ginger Lime, Feisty Cherry, Zesty Blood Orange and Twisted Mango – that offer unexpected twists on the unique, crisp taste of Diet Coke. The flavors were developed to appeal to adventurous palates following two years of focus group interviews, industry research and more.

Coca-Cola’s R&D team tested more than 30 new Diet Coke flavor recipes – including those with tropical, citrus and even botanical notes – with more than 10,000 people before ultimately landing on the four that will hit stores later this month in sleek cans sold as on-the-go singles and in eight-packs. Diet Coke also will continue to be offered in all existing package sizes, such as standard 12-ounce cans, mini cans, glass bottles and more.

Diet Coke Senior Brand Manager Melissa Schwartz said conversations with fellow Millennials (and current fans) guided every step of the innovation process.

“We cast a very broad flavor net after looking at what Millennials are eating and drinking and what food and beverage trends and insights told us,” she said. “We tried everything from spicy notes to exotic superfruits from around the world. We even hosted a mixology session in Atlanta where we invited fans to ideate, create and taste Diet Coke flavors we were considering.”

'We hope to bring new fans into the Diet Coke family with these new flavors, but also to encourage those who have either never tried Diet Coke or lost touch with the brand to give it a try.'

Ultimately, the final four flavors – which Schwartz calls “fruit-forward, but with an unexpected twist” – bubbled up to the top. “We took cherry and lime – two very popular Diet Coke flavors – and gave them a bit of a modern facelift,” she explained. “And we added two completely new tropical tastes not usually associated with the Coca-Cola trademark. This new lineup has something for everyone, and we hope fans love them just as much as we do.”

Diet Coke Taste Testers

The versatile varieties serve as refreshing companions to a range of everyday occasions – from a.m. to afternoon refreshment, to a flavorful dinner, to a night out with friends. They also complement the great taste of Diet Coke, which is here to stay.

“As we were evaluating these new flavors, we paid close attention to how they impacted perceptions of the Diet Coke brand, holistically,” Schwartz said. “We hope to bring new fans into the Diet Coke family with these new flavors, but also to encourage those who have either never tried Diet Coke or lost touch with the brand to give it a try.”

The Diet Coke known and loved by millions was also part of the flavor taste test panel – and performed very well, Schwartz noted. “We would never touch the taste,” she insisted. “It’s not changing… we’re just bringing along four new friends.”

In the weeks leading up to launch, the brand offered a select group of Millennial influencers in Minneapolis, Atlanta, Los Angeles and New York the opportunity to see and try for the first time the new Diet Coke family with its new look, new can and new flavors – and share their honest, authentic (and unpaid) reactions. Watch this video to hear what they had to say as they had their first tastes.

“All elements of the Diet Coke recast – from the refreshed visual identity and packaging, to the new flavors, to the advertising campaign that will launch later this month – work together to reinforce the brand’s bold new positioning,” Schwartz said. "We’re taking the core equities of Diet Coke and pivoting them slightly to be more relevant to younger generations.”