Thinking outside the (Mentos) box

Remember that fad a few years ago where you could drop Mentos in a bottle of Diet Coke and it would shoot up a geyser? Well, it's back. USA Today's On Deadline says "Mentos mixed with Coke Zero offers [a] new clean fuel alternative." The AP says:

The guys from Maine who became an online sensation by creating geysers from soda and Mentos candies have discovered it's not just entertainment. It can propel vehicles, as well.

Check it out above.

A contraption created by Fritz Grobe and Stephen Voltz of Buckfield using a bike and a trailer is powered by piston mechanism using hundreds of pieces of Mentos candy and Coke Zero. On a video posted online Tuesday, the machine traveled more than 220 feet.

Though they did surpass distance of the Wright brothers' first flight, my take on the experiment is that they really could have been more efficient.  It looks like fun, but in the end, just a major waste of Coke. I like that they're thinking outside the box, but I didn't see any piston (the article says there was one), but rather more of a rocket-style propulsion, pushing the contraption from a wall. If the expanding Coke could push pistons or something I'd guess they could have gone much further. I'm envisioning "Coke injectors" that release the correct ratio of soda-to-Mento with spark plugs made from PEZ dispensers that drop in the candy on cue. Creativity and fun certainly have their place in business, as these two show. They are creating great viral content:

The cover of Advertising Age's 2007 "Agency of the Year" issue, featured a large photo of Voltz and Grobe in their trademark lab coats and goggles and the accompanying article described EepyBird's Coke & Mentos Experiments as "the most important commercial content of 2006." Media Magazine wrote that EepyBird's Diet Coke and Mentos video is "a textbook example of how a company can harness the power of viral video" and the U.K.'s Times Online website has described EepyBird's work as among the few "adverts so good people choose to watch them."