Taco Bell hoping to 'revolutionize' fast food with touchless 4-lane drive-thru

Taco Bell® And Franchisee Partner To Revolutionize The Drive-Thru Experience With Taco Bell Defy
Photo credit Taco Bell press release

Taco Bell is living in 2040, and we can’t wait to visit.

The popular fast food chain announced one of its most innovative designs yet with a groundbreaking four-lane, two-story drive-thru experience.

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With the help of franchise partner Border Foods, Taco Bell is set to break ground in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota later this year with plans to open the restaurant to the public by summer 2022.

The 3,000 square-foot model features first-of-its-kind technology that offers food faster than ever before. Customers can cruise down any of its four lanes to get their hands on the beloved menu items. The company is calling it the “frictionless future of Taco Bell,” Thursday’s press release states.

Three of the four lanes are dedicated to mobile or delivery order pickups, and provide “skip-the-line” services to people who order via the Taco Bell app. With only one traditional drive-thru lane, the company hopes to ease the flow of traffic and serve more loyal customers.

"This new, innovative concept breaking ground in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, will improve a major aspect of the consumer experience: drive-thru speed," said Aaron Engler, President of Border Foods. "We're partnering with Taco Bell and the best and brightest in technology and design to create what will very likely be the future of quick service restaurants," he added.

The comany is referring to their "revolutionary" project as “Defy," with plans to take digital infrastructure to new heights.

The drive-thru features check-in screens that allow customers to scan a unique QR code and pick up their food in a seamless, contactless manner via a proprietary lift system. A two-way audio and video system also allows customers to interact directly with Taco Bell team members in real time.

"Partnering with our franchisees to test new concepts is a huge unlock of learning for us,” said Mike Grams, Taco Bell's President and Global COO. “What we learn from the test of this new Defy concept may help shape future Taco Bell restaurants."

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