Jolt Cola

Jolt Cola

“All the sugar and twice the caffeine.”

While most soda companies tend to downplay their caffeine content, a new product popped up in the 80s that not only didn’t shy away from mentioning the chemical, but proudly touted its enormous quantities on the side of every can. Jolt was a cola with a purpose, offering twice the stimulation for anyone who looked to soda for a quick pick-me-up.

Jolt was first manufactured in Rochester, NY, the creation of C. J. Rapp. Upon its introduction in 1985, it received significant media attention and, as a result, flew off of store shelves. The company shrewdly aimed their marketing at the college crowd, who could always use a little extra bit of alertness for those late night study sessions, and the strategy worked. It also benefited from some significant product placement in 1993, when the product was prominently featured in such popular films as Jurassic Park, Hackers, Men at Work, Deep Impact and Wayne’s World 2.

The Jolt Cola Company eventually changed its name to Wet Planet Beverages and began diversifying its product line to include a wide variety of Energy Drinks. They introduced a whole new spectrum of flavors, licensed their name to a line of chewing gum, and started offering smaller cans of the product to compete with the uber-successful Red Bull craze. Today, unless you live in California, your chances of finding an actual Jolt Cola are slim, although the line of Jolt energy drinks are still sold worldwide, including the “Power Cola” flavor. Still, these aren’t the same as the original soda, which actually wasn’t a bad tasting soft drink.

If your late-night study sessions were fortified with a can or two of Jolt, or if you bought a can just to see what all the ruckus was about, we’d love to hear your memories in our comments section. Tell us what you remember about this infamous soda from the 80s that everyone was talking about.

Revision List

#1 on 2011-Jul-19 Tue  07:11+-25200

#2 on 2011-Jul-19 Tue  07:13+-25200

#3 on 2011-Jul-19 Tue  07:51+-25200

#4 on 2011-Jul-19 Tue  07:32+-25200

#5 on 2011-Jul-19 Tue  07:43+-25200

9 Responses to “Jolt Cola”

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  1. Gotta love that Jolt Cola!

  2. Gavin says:

    I didn’t realize Jolt had been around so long, I thought it was from the 90s. I can’t begin to remember how many late night gaming sessions gallons of Jolt got me through

  3. Rod Whitenack says:

    They stocked Jolt Cola in a vending machine in the lobby of my dorm at Western Kentucky University (Go Hilltoppers!), and in those days I wasn’t the greatest or most responsible student that ever lived. Thus I wrote many research papers and studied for many exams on the last night after midnight under the power of Jolt. Thankfully, I became a much better student eventually, but I had the greatest time of my life at good old WKU.

  4. The Big Bon says:

    When I was working in Florida, the place I worked in was getting updated with a robotic system and that meant longer hours to get things finished. It was pretty much a straight month of working anywhere from 12-14 hours a day to get things done. I remember how I used to toss those back to stay alert. Even after that month was over, I was still buying them all the time. It pretty much tasted like mountain dew to me with twice the kick. I can’t find them anywhere now and I do miss my Jolt cola.

  5. Jorge Reyna says:

    I remember drinking Jolt cola to keep me up during my graveyard shift days. It tasted like carbonated coffee, but it worked.

  6. Beau says:

    I remember first drinking Jolt cola around 1986 or ”87 when I was a kid. It was always hard to find — even then, so whenever I saw one available, I would pick one up. I vividly remember those days and as a kid. Garbage Pail Kids, New York Seltzer, Zeltzer Seltzer, Jolt Cola, baseball cards, “Jerkey stuff” (shreaded beef jerky in a can), Cherry Chan (later Cherry Chan… until it was decided that it was “racist”… unggg) and the beginning of the California lottery (I was to young to play but back then, but I could buy cigarettes for my parents!), Max Headroom & Spuds McKenzie…

    I have fond memories of those days…

  7. Natasha says:

    I started drinking Jolt when I started high school in South Amboy, NJ. There was a little grocery store a block up from the high school and I use to buy 2 cans-one to drink right then and the other to drink later in the day to wake me up.

  8. c. russell says:

    Jolt cola went bankrupt, however it is still being made, and it has been switched back to the original formula and comes in glass bottles. It is just as I remember it. I just finished a 12 pack over the past week and will be ordering a few cases later today!

  9. L.Bingaman says:

    Loved this stuff! Worked in a drive-thru in Lima,Ohio, and it was the only place to find it. Myself, and one customer, kept that stuff coming to the store all by ourselves. However, the happiness ended. Wish I could try it again…

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