Coca-Cola tested Cherry Coke on an audience at the 1982 World's Fair. After the introduction of Cherry Coke and the failure of New Coke the drink then entered mainstream production in 1985. Cherry Coke, which by 2007 had been renamed Coca-Cola Cherry in the U.S. and some other countries, was the third variation of Coca-Cola at that time – the others being classic Coke and Diet Coke – and the first flavored Coke. It was released concurrently with the far less popular New Coke, and gained significant market share when that product was discontinued in 1992. Diet Cherry Coke was introduced in 1986, and renamed "Diet Coke Cherry" in 2005. A second low-calorie version, Coca-Cola Cherry Zero (based on Coca-Cola Zero), was added in 2007. The Coca-Cola Company would later introduce other flavored Coke variants, beginning with Vanilla Coke in May 2002, later followed by lime, raspberry, lemon, Black Cherry Vanilla and orange variants. Many of these are currently only sold in overseas markets or are microdispensed through Coca-Cola's Freestyle vending machines.
An empty bottle and can of Coca-Cola Cherry, using the 2007-11 U.S. design
Packaging for Coca-Cola Cherry differs greatly from country to country. In most areas, the current can and bottle label designs are based on the standard Coca-Cola label in a pink or purple hue, often with images of cherries.
On February 7, 2007, Coca-Cola launched a new campaign for the Coca-Cola Cherry brand in the U.S., resulting in a significant redesign of the product's label. Jay-Z was chosen to be the spokesman and played a part in designing the new can graphics. A new diet version, Coca-Cola Cherry Zero, was also introduced, although the original Diet Coke Cherry will remain available in 12-packs. These designs remained in place until early 2011, when a cleaner design (closer to the label designs used overseas) was introduced.