Taco Bell to roll out Doritos tacos
The chain is adding new products and a new slogan to create some much-needed buzz.
The fast-food chain is in a bit of a slump, seeing sales fall amid increasing competition from Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG). Taco Bell has lost some buzz, its brand damaged by a recent lawsuit questioning the quality of the beef in its tacos.
So now the chain, owned by Yum Brands (YUM), is trying to mount a comeback. And key to its revival is a taco shell made entirely out of Doritos. The new line of Doritos Locos Tacos has been in test mode, with a national roll-out scheduled for March 8.
The Doritos tacos come with a cardboard holder to keep customer hands from getting covered with orange cheese dust, according to USA Today. Taco Bell is considering using shells made from Cool Ranch Doritos as well.
Taco Bell's CEO once described his company as the Hyundai of fast food, with Chipotle as the BMW. The following video discusses those comments.
Post continues below.
The idea sprung from a deal Taco Bell already had with Frito-Lay, owned by PepsiCo (PEP), to add Fritos to its Beefy Crunch Burrito. In the markets where the taco is being tested, three in 10 customers are ordering the tacos, USA Today reported. That's enough to make Yum Brands -- and the fast-food industry -- think that the Doritos taco could be one of the biggest hits of the year.
And it might help Taco Bell recover some momentum in the face of a growing threat from Chipotle, which plans to open as many as 165 new stores in 2012 on top of the 1,230 it already operates.
Taco Bell has more ideas to juice its business, USA Today reports. Here are other initiatives the chain plans:
Breakfast burritos. Some locations are selling burritos made with eggs and sausage. Breakfast will be expanded nationwide over the next two years.
Cantina Bell. In the same vein as Chipotle, Taco Bell is trying the Cantina Bell line of products, made with more natural ingredients.
New slogan. No more telling customers to "think outside the bun." Now Taco Bell is trying to promote a lifestyle with the saying "Live Más," or "live more" in Spanish.
All strong and innovative ideas. But will they be enough to turn Taco Bell around?
Their Problem is their pricing - 4 Tacos and a medium drink set me back almost $8 the other day. I was shocked!!! It use to be the cheapest of all the fast food places.
Also their menu is getting too complicated!
chipotle's a rip off! and taco bell customers don't cross over.
no story here!
The lawsuit against Taco Bell was dropped by the law firm without any real explaination. Most likely a bunch of lawyers looking for a quick payday. Once they realized it wasn't going to be so quick or easy, they backed down. The problem with that is that it's front page news when that sort of law suit is announced, but you didn't hear much about it's dismissal.
While I am in no way a fan of Taco Bell, it's a shame they've had to spend millions to counteract what turned out to be bogus claims. In a class action suit against Taco Bell, I'd guess the lawyers would have ended up with millions while the customers got a coupon for a free taco.
The real problem with Taco Hell is their food is cheaply made, low quality and it tastes like it.
They pushed out the better "Tex-Mex" chains like Zantigos in the past and now they're at the other end of the stick. So how does it feel.
When load up your bland burritos with cheap fillers like beans, rice and that thing you call "ground beef filling" is it any wonder when a quality alternative comes along, you don't find people crowding to your outlets.
If you served decent food at a decent price and didn't try to cut costs maybe you'll survive.
Also what's the deal with all the mexican people who seem to exclusively work at your outlets who can bearly speak English?
Forgive me but Taco Bell is about as far from authentic Mexican food as you can get so I doubt they're there to give everyone pointers on how to cook it.
When the Encherto first came out it was the best burrito out there. Now they just slap some sauce over it and that's about it. They have really ruined themselves by being greedy and shoddy service. We don't eat there anymore...
I find it hard to believe that anybody really cares about this stuff. It's crappy fast food, all of it. BK
McD, Taco bell etc etc. I really prefer to cook my own food the way I like it!
Am I the new minority?
If Taco Bell wants to give competition in the breakfast arena they have to open earlier in the morning. Our local Taco bell open at 8:00am to serve breakfast, we are already seeing patients by then.
Taco Bell has a long way to go to serve food that is comperable to Chipotle, although I would like to try the Doritos taco.
Now Taco Bell is trying to promote a lifestyle with the saying "Live Más," or "live more" in Spanish.
I don't recommend it as a marketing strategy. A lot of people are already not happy with 'Push 1 for English, push 2 for Spanish'.
Since I live in Texas, I have access to many excellent mexican and tex-mex places to eat. I do not understand how both a taco bell and a taco bueno can exist in this town. Obviously, a lot of people eat there, travelers maybe?
Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
As geopolitical tensions threaten to spin out of control, investors are wondering how best to position their portfolios for the global turmoil.
VIDEO ON MSN MONEY
Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.
Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.
Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.