Taco Bell’s New Drive-Thru Concept Is Straight Out of the Future, Features Four Lanes and Lift System

by Jonathan Howard

When Taco Bell isn’t coming up with its latest cheesy, meaty, tortilla-wrapped treat, it is trying to innovate the drive-thru experience. Recently, Taco Bell announced its newest restaurant design. The digital rendering of the new design shows a lifted kitchen over various drive-thru spots.

The fast-food chain is calling the new design, “Taco Bell Defy.” The basic idea is that the food will “defy” gravity. Based on the early rendering, it looks like a bank. The future of food is going to be digital as well with plans to expand mobile app use.

The new design will first release in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota. While customers can drive up and order regularly, three lanes will be exclusively for mobile app users. Since 2014 Taco Bell has used its mobile app for ordering and paying. However, it isn’t always the most efficient. Customers typically have to go through the drive-thru and while it saves time ordering, the prep time won’t change much.

With three of the four lanes being used just for mobile app users, perhaps the efficiency will be better going forward. This isn’t the first time that Taco Bell has planned to change up its stores. Back in April, the chain announced its first digital-only location. So, it comes as no surprise that more emphasis is being put on the mobile app moving forward.

During the last year, Taco Bell has changed up its menu, condensed it, and tried to be more efficient. While it seems a bit impersonal, that is all part of the plan. Michael Strommen, CEO of the design company working on the new store said, “The design strategically blends technology and design to deliver the convenience of fast, craveable food without many of the challenges of traditional drive-thrus.

Taco Bell Going Through Changes

Since 2020, Taco Bell has been going through lots of changes. Not only is the restaurant chain making new changes to drive-thru design, but it has also changed up the menu. Last year they purged the menu of a few fan-favorite items and got some pushback from customers. The Mexican Pizza was one of the many casualties.

Not only was the beloved pizza removed, but the shredded chicken was also taken off as well as pico de gallo. Those items have not been returned, but one item was brought back. Taco Bell had gotten rid of their potatoes, little fried, diced chunks. After customers were left with a bare menu in comparison to what it was prior, the return of potatoes made many rejoice.

Taco Bell has always been changing things up throughout time. Customers will have to wait and see what other changes could come to the fast-food chain’s menu. If the new drive-thru design is successful there could be one coming to a city near you.