Popular soft drink Lilt has been taken down from UK shelves after 48 years, but it will be coming back as a new Fanta flavour.

The tangy drink began in 1975 and came with the strapline “The Totally Tropical Taste”.

It was only sold in the UK, Ireland, Gibraltar and the Seychelles.

Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) confirmed the change in a statement, explaining that while the drink’s packaging and logo are being changed, the flavour will be back on shelves but known as Fanta Pineapple and Grapefruit instead.

Hereford Times: Lilt will no longer be on UK shelves as we know it, instead it will become a new Fanta flavourLilt will no longer be on UK shelves as we know it, instead it will become a new Fanta flavour (Image: PA)

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.”

In the late 1980s, Lilt became a feature of popular culture with its Lilt Man parody adverts.

A decade later it was promoted by two Jamaican women known as the Lilt Ladies.

Between 2008 and 2014, Coca-Cola reduced the number of calories, sugar and artificial sweeteners in the drink as part of efforts to make healthier products in response to the Government’s Public Health Responsibility Deal.

The new Fanta flavour will be available to buy from February 14.