Its development started as a project to develop a high performance off-road vehicle for military use at the end of the 1970s. Lamborghini engineer Giulio Alfieri resurrected the project in 1981 with the LM001: an innovative concept with a rear-mounted engine, followed by the LMA prototype with a front-mounted powertrain. The final production model of the LM002 was first presented at the Brussels Auto Show in 1986 using the V12 engine from the Countach Quattrovalvole.
In an aluminium and fibreglass body, with four-wheel drive transmission, transfer case and three self-locking differentials, the SUV could exceed gradients of 120%. Reaching speeds of more than 200km/h, it was equipped with special Pirelli Scorpion tyres, allowing "floating" capabilities across soft surfaces such as sand, and highly durable in hot conditions.
The production of the bodies started in a company near Bilbao, Spain. Then the semi-assembled parts were shipped to Sant’Agata Bolognese for completion with the powertrain, mechanical parts, finishing, testing and delivery. A luxurious interior matching the individual needs of the customer completed the LM002.