Cobra Beer has embarked on the next step in its ambitious two-year growth plans with the launch of a re-designed bottle, a nationwide sampling campaign and an on-pack promotion.

The new bottle will roll out next month across three lines: Cobra Premium, Cobra Lower Cal, which becomes Cobra Light, and Cobra 0.0%, which becomes Cobra Zero %.

The embossed bottles remain for now but the company says it is considering a change in the autumn. New designs for King Cobra and Cobra Bite are also in the pipeline and the company is also reviewing its bar fonts and glassware.

Sampling kicks off this month and will run across the major multiple grocers, wholesalers and C&Cs. To increase buzz around the campaign Cobra has procured five replica classic racing cars to visit outlets.

The racing car theme will be continued in the on-pack promotion, which offers the chance to win track days at Silverstone and will run across 665,000 packs of Cobra Premium and Cobra Zero %. Each pack will also feature a £55 discount on a Silverstone track day worth more than £150.

"This is something a little different," said marketing communications executive Ben Egan. "The interests of our core consumers, who are a little older than those of other premium lagers, lie around subjects such as film and classic cars."

All the activities form part of a £14m spend this year, as Cobra tries to go "beyond the curry house."

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