Inevitably, the rebrand created a wave of devastated fans on social media, with one saying: "Lilt has been discontinued. I don’t think I want to live in a world without Lilt in it. What’s the point anymore."
Another joked: "'It was the first summer without Lilt' would honestly make an excellent opening line to a novel."
The tangy drink began in 1975 with the strapline “The Totally Tropical Taste” and was only sold in the UK, Ireland, Gibraltar and the Seychelles.
Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) confirmed the change in a statement, noting that the drink’s packaging and logo are being changed.
CCEP said: "Keen Lilt fans may have spotted a gradual transition as the drink has made its way into the Fanta family over the past few months, with changes to its packaging and logo.
"Some have even hypothesised on social media that Lilt may be becoming part of the Fanta brand, and one even went as far as producing their own news broadcast-style video."
The firm’s GB vice-president of commercial development insisted the drink is the same, and simply has a new name.
Martin Attock said: "Our main priority with this announcement is to reassure Lilt’s loyal fanbase that absolutely nothing has changed when it comes to the iconic taste of the drink they know and love.
"It’s still bursting with tangy tropical flavours, it’s just got itself a new name."
Lilt became a feature of popular culture with its Lilt Man parody adverts in the late 1980s, while a decade later it was promoted by two Jamaican women known as the Lilt Ladies.
Coca-Cola reduced the number of calories, sugar and artificial sweeteners in the drink between 2008 and 2014 as part of efforts to make healthier products in response to the Government’s Public Health Responsibility Deal.
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