Pepsi to Launch Lime-Flavored Soda

PepsiCo Inc. (PEP) plans to introduce two lime-flavored carbonated soft drinks in a bid to match a similar offering from rival Coca-Cola Co. (KO).

PepsiCo will bring the two new drinks, to be called Pepsi Lime (search) and Diet Pepsi Lime, to market in late April or early May, spokesman Dave DeCecco said Friday, confirming a report that first appeared in trade publication Beverage Digest.

He declined to provide any sales or production forecasts for the drinks.

Coca-Cola, which successfully launched Diet Coke with Lime in early 2004, is bringing out a Coca-Cola with Lime drink in the next month, Beverage Digest said.

Pepsi'style dieters in 2004 with drinks offering 50 percent less sugar and carbohydrates than regular colas but the products performed below expectations.

Pepsi's successful line extensions, which often are pegged to certain holidays or seasons, generate publicity for its entire line, said Smith Barney analyst Bonnie Herzog.

"We believe limited time extensions like Mountain Dew Live Wire (search) and Mountain Dew Pitch Black created enough excitement to give the entire trademark a boost," Herzog said in a research note.

Shares of PepsiCo rose 27 cents to $54.60 on the New York Stock Exchange (search).