These four words say it all when it comes to appreciating America’s love affair with Taco Bell and our zesty menu. Exciting new products, breakthrough advertising and promotions, and a renewed dedication to providing a positive customer restaurant experience all led to growth and a very successful year.

1998 was the year of Gorditas — the introduction of this bold new line of products redefined how hungry people think about Taco Bell’s food. Gorditas combine two of the hottest food trends sweeping the country today: the increased craving for spicier, more flavorful food and the desire for heartier-textured breads. More than one-quarter of a billion Gorditas were sold in 1998 alone.

Taco Bell also continued to underscore its value leadership position through offerings such as the 99-cent Nachos BellGrande and Mexican Pizza — all of which were promoted by the brand’s most avid cheerleader, the Chihuahua.

The bilingual Mexican canine drew a collective “muy bueno” from consumers of all ages and backgrounds by declaring his hunger and love for Taco Bell. USA Today hailed the Chihuahua as a “Taco Goliath” who “leaves a mark on society and takes a bite out of the fast-food competition.” Life Magazine declared the Chihuahua among the “100 Best Things About America Now.”


The whole Taco Bell system worked hard to improve the customer experience in our restaurants — and our financial results were strong as a result. In all, system-wide sales reached $5 billion in 1998. For the second consecutive year, the system experienced positive same store sales growth, with comparable unit sales advancing three percent.
In turn, company restaurants saw margins improve by two percentage points.

By continuing to provide Great tasting Mexican food anytime, and anywhere, we’ll have all of America exclaiming, “Yo Quiero Taco Bell” for many years to come. Viva Taco Bell!


Peter Waller (left)
President & Chief Concept Officer

Tom Davin (right)
Chief Operating Officer