Lamborghini Celebrates the LM002’s Legacy, the Original Luxury SUV

Lamborghini professionally restores an LM002 in anticipation of the Urus' debut.

The Lamborghini Urus performance SUV may be newest and most popular model that the raging bull has put out this year, but it has big shoes to fill. Long before the Audi takeover, Lamborghini built the LM002, regarded as the spark that started the luxury performance SUV trend.

Just 300 LM002s were built, originally for military use with the codename “Cheetah.” The SUV officially debuted in 1986, featuring a 450-horsepower V12 lifted straight out of the Countach Quattrovalvole. The LM002 was comfortable in every environment thanks to its trio of locking differentials, four-wheel drive, and Pirelli Scorpion tires specifically developed for the vehicle. 

Before the Urus goes live on Dec. 4, Lamborghini wants to remind us that its SUV roots run deep. To celebrate 25 years since the LM002’s production ended, Lambo recruited its Polo Storico division to restore a black LM002, chassis #12231 to be exact. The pristine SUV now sits in the Lamborghini Museum in Sant’Agata Bolognese.

“[The LM002 was] a great innovative project in which there was a chance to share the super sport approach together with a difference spec of a car that was used for a different purpose,” said Lamborghini CEO Stephen Domencali in a press release. 


It may not have been the first of its kind, but current performance SUVs like the Range Rover Sport and Porsche Cayenne Turbo take noticeable inspiration from the LM002. In a world where crossovers reign and enthusiast cars might soon go extinct, these hot SUVs may be the light at the end of the tunnel.