“They didn’t really see anything that fit their needs,” Simon Lowden, chief marketing officer for PepsiCo’s Americas beverages, told the Associated Press, referring to the company’s market research.
The new drink combines Mountain Dew flavor, fruit juice, artificial sweetener, caffeine and carbonation to produce an alternative to coffee or tea. It’s not exactly a soda, and it’s not exactly an energy drink. Kickstart has 92 milligrams of caffeine per 16 ounces, 20 milligrams more than Mountain Dew, 60 fewer than Red Bull.
But neither Kickstart nor Red Bull can compete with coffee for a real caffeine boost. A 16-ounce cup from Starbucks packs 330 milligrams.
Maybe PepsiCo can come up with a totally decaffeinated version of their new morning drink. Let’s call it Don’tstart.