In a new series of ads running on Canadian radio, the Pepsi Taste Challenge will challenge Coca-Cola's sense of humour by offering the Pepsi taste test to the Coca-Cola polar bears.

But, where everyone remembers the original cola bears looking wholesome, happy and cuddly, in this latest series of radio ads their hackles are up and fur is flying when they try and tear apart a Pepsi Challenger for attempting to give them the Pepsi Taste Test.

In the new ads a Pepsi Challenger tries to give the taste test to various representatives of Coca-Cola, but the cola bears attempt to afflict grievous harm on the Pepsi Challenger and in another, he wakes the president of Coca-Cola in the early hours of the morning and gets chased away by vicious guard dogs. In his final attempt to offer the Pepsi Taste Challenge he sees Santa Claus, who promptly threatens to set the elves on him.

Pepsi's director of marketing, Richard Burjaw, told "The ads are really popular, we're supporting the programme on radio and on the internet and we have had a great response from consumers."

The Pepsi brand team wanted to give out the message that Pepsi is confident enough in its product to put the Taste Challenge to anyone.

Developed by Toronto-based BBDO Canada, the campaign is to build awareness of the summer promotion and is running in eight cities for nine weeks in Ontario and Western Canada.

Sarah Diston