Jolt Cola was released in 1985 by Jolt Company, Inc. It was created by C. J. Rapp to attract the interest of students and young professionals looking for a caffeinated pick-me-up that was similar to an energy drink.
Rapp was inspired to create his supercharged caffeine drink while watching his classmates at SUNY Potsdam in Rochester. His classmates would mix different types of drinks, in hopes of creating a supercharged drink that would help them stay awake longer.
If they could put off going to sleep, then they could stay awake to study, and finish all their term papers and projects. Thus Rapp created Jolt Cola in an effort to create a solution for this problem.
Jolt has been dubbed as America’s first carbonated energy drink. The tagline for the beverage was, “All the sugar and twice the caffeine!”
Jolt Cola created quite the cult following, loved among gamers, students, and those in need of a late night pick-me-up. Jolt was sold in America, Canada, Netherlands, Finland, Ireland, Australia, Japan, the Philippines, Pakistan, and Sweden.
Sadly, Jolt Cola is no longer available for purchase at this time. Current owners of the Jolt Cola Company, ECC Jolt, have made no public announcement about Jolt Cola’s fate since 2019.
A Brief History Of Jolt Cola
In 1987, Jolt Company, Inc. released Jolt 25, which was a low calorie version of the drink containing only 25 calories. Later, other flavors of cola were added to the line as well: Cherry Bomb, Citrus Climax, Orange Blast, White Lightning, Red Eye, and Electric Blue.
In 2003, Jolt was licensed to a company called Gumrunners, Inc., and caffeinated gum and mints were born. Two flavors were created: Spearmint and Icy Mint. They ran with the tag line, “Chew More, Do More.”
In 2006, Jolt rebranded, becoming Jolt energy. Jolt cans were shaped like AA Batteries, and became known as Jolt battery bottles. They also created small 8.5oz cans called, “Quick Fix.”
The Quick Fix bottles could also be used as mix-ins for alcoholic drinks. Jolt also changed the flavors of their cola products as well. The new flavors included: Cola, Blue Raspberry, Cherry Bomb, Silver, Wild Grape, Orange Blast, Passionfruit, and Ultra (a diet version).
In 2008, C.J. Rapp sold his controlling shares of stock of The Jolt Company to Emigrant Capital. In 2009, the Emigrant Capital filed for bankruptcy. The company was forced to file for bankruptcy because of issues with the company’s supplier in regards to pricing and packaging.
Emigrant Capital was sued by C.J. Rapp and other shareholders from the company for breach of Fiduciary responsibility. This lawsuit went on for eight years before an undisclosed settlement was reached.
Is Jolt Cola Coming Back?
Jolt Cola returned to market in 2017. It was briefly being sold at Dollar General, Casey’s General Store, and on Amazon. ECC Jolt was producing the product. ECC Jolt stopped all of its marketing campaigns in 2019, and thus Jolt Cola has disappeared from stores again.
No updates have been made to the Jolt Cola website since 2019. Only time will tell if Jolt Cola will once again find its way back to shelves and quench the thirst of its loyal followers all over the world once again.