Thursday, July 24, 2014

Throwback Thirst-Day: Pepsi Convoy!

07.24.2014 – If you’ve been a long time Transformers Fan to see some early releases in the 1980s you won’t be surprised about the collaboration with Hasbro and another brand shall we say Pepsi. For those who have been drinking another beverage maybe it’s time you support Pepsi Convoy.

Transformers had been once had a tie-up with the famous soda beverage in 1985 when they released a redeco of the original Optimus Prime toy with Pepsi stickers featured on the side of the trailer. Twenty years later in 2005 Takara has similar in mind only this time Optimus Prime delivers Pepsi.

Enter: Pepsi Convoy released in 2005 which was an inspiration to the original ‘Pepsi Optimus Prime’ from that particular era. Though Takara takes the step further by releasing a Transformer in Pepsi colors and you got Convoy (Japanese name of Optimus Prime) pulling a ”Bottle Station” that can carry a 500ml-size bottle (a common size in Japan) or three 350ml cans. This can also carry 12 bottle caps (bottle cap figurines being a common and popular collectible item in Japan). The other features of the “Bottle Station” are that you can store Pepsi Convoy’s CO2 gun and two fists underneath.

The “Bottle Station” is unique trailer unit only to the release of Pepsi Convoy in 2005, and there are no other version until Hasbro Toy Shop Exclusive has re-released it in 2007 as Pepsi Optimus Prime with minor changes in the colors and the shortened smokestacks (due to US child safety laws).

Pepsi Convoy is a reissue of the original G1 Optimus Prime with colors of Pepsi including the product logo on his left shoulder while an Autobot symbol on his right. It’s the same classic Optimus Prime transforming into a mid-to-late-1970s White Freightliner 96-inch cab WFT cab over engine semi-trailer truck. The windscreen section can open to reveal ultimately-unused chairs that were originally designed for Diaclone driver figures.

In robot mode you’ll notice all the Pepsi-themed colors that would have both sides of Convoy’s head having tiny Pepsi logo. The feet though noticed of paint chipping this are the original 2005 release have the iconic Pepsi logo on its toes, since this is the reissue if the original G1 Optimus Prime it still has diecast parts that includes the windscreen section also made with the same material.

In fiction Pepsi Convoy has Pepsi-related powers that includes his CO2 gun that might me connected to his “Bottle Station” trailer in the world of the Kiss Players, where battled a different Galvatron who crash landed in Tokyo, devastating the city, Japanese opinion of all Transformers (even Autobots) began to become violently negative. Well until everything change that when the people of Tokyo got help from an unknown Autobot who would eventually turn out to be Pepsi Convoy.

Of course in the Philippines the 500ml-size Pepsi bottle is slightly different from Japan or for any other country. Pepsi Convoy has been featured before back in 2005 at that time when 7 Eleven had a limited release for the Pepsi Blue drink for this region, that is only available exclusively in the convenient store. This time since 7 Eleven has brought back Pepsi Blue once again it would be cool to feature Pepsi Convoy for those who never have heard or seen this figure.

So if you’re thinking Optimus Prime or rather known as Convoy would ever promote another soda drink guess again… This Autobot is made of “Sentient Metal” as possibly has something to do with Pepsi Man as mentioned in his biofile, but not entirely confirmed having direct connection.

Pepsi Convoy was never released in local retail and was only available through specialty stores in the Philippines, and this one was acquired through for PhP 2,300.00 pesos ($ 53.10 US dollars) back in 2005. But due to its cult popularity it might be more expensive now unlike 9 years ago.

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