The impressive Lamborghini LM002 V12 off road mammoth never managed to reach its full potential, initially it was developed for military use as the Cheetah, but that project didn’t work out quite the way Lamborghini intended it … things went from bad to worse and the company almost collapsed … but the Raging Bull managed to survive and came back with the LM002.
The Lamborghini LM002 or Rambo Lambo as it was called by a journalist in the United States was an SUV like no other back in the Eighties … a massive V12 engine up front with a 5167cc displacement delivering 450 hp to all four wheels … which in this case were massive 17 inch steel rims covered with stupendously expensive Pirelli Scorpion tires.
It would be almost impossible to get stuck in the sand with this superlative off road Bull, but the money was to be made from army use, unfortunately the Middle-Eastern armies didn't order large numbers of it, and an attempt to sell it to the United States wasn't met with the enthusiasm needed to boost sales.
At the end of the production in 1993, the US Importer did create a special LM Americana edition, with upgraded interior, aluminum MSW/OZ wheels and chrome bumpers to the front and rear of the car, presented at the 1992 Detroit Auto Show it managed to sell only 60 units, most of them with the fuel injected Diablo engine.
With only 60 made, thee LM Americana could be considered rather rare, but without a doubt the most exclusive LM002 ever made has to be the one presented on this page, none other than the Sultan of Brunei is believed to have put in an order for an LM002 Estate version at a Turin based body shop owned by Salvatore Diomante.
Diomante created a fully closed version of the Lamborghini LM002, which normally had an open deck at the rear to seat four to six additional men (originally intended to be soldiers in fact). By raising the roof section, stretching the rear overhang and putting in a U shaped bench arrangement in the rear the LM002 Estate could now seat five people behind the driver and passenger.
Naturally full leather hides were used inside for the very luxurious interior, add a small TV set and possibly a VCR and the owner could watch his favorite show while on the road … or in the sand. Some sources state the car also had CD and DVD players … but somehow I doubt these would be installed back in 1986 as the DVD only came around in 1995, home CD players did get introduced in 1982, if they made it into this LM002 only four years later I can’t confirm, nor deny.
The seats in this very special LM002 did get electric controls while the new roof also had a sliding sunroof installed and the leather interior was upgraded with custom made wood panels, even the dashboard was modified by request of the customer.
Early photographs show a white finished over a tan leather interior, however later on this car has been repainted, one photo exist of it in a bright green color with a UK registration on it, but today this one of a kind Lamborghini is finished in silver metallic over a black leather interior and it is located in Germany, on dealer plates.
In 2008 the LM002 Diomante Estate was valued around €150,000, which isn’t too bad for a car that was nearly 25 years old, today the value is still high as it is without a doubt the most impressive LM002 made, and with less than 10,000 km on the counter it might still be a solid investment.
This specific Lamborghini has been on display at the 2010 edition of Klassikwelt in Friedrichshafen while someone has spotted it in Stockholm as late at April 2012 … so it is safe to say the car still exists, and is most likely still for sale right now.
There has been a rumor about a six-wheel version of the LM constructed for a customer in the Middle-East, but I haven't been able to confirm this yet, would be pretty amazing if you ask me.
The massive LM002 was a reasonable success back in it's days, so a successor could be a great idea.
(added on June 28. 2000)
There is still room for more models at Sant'Agata, why not a new SUV to succeed the LM002
(added on December 15. 2002)
Imagine a massive off-road vehicle with a Countach V12 engine up front ... meet the Lamborghini LM002
(added on January 2. 2013)
Why not mount a massive 7-Liter off-shore engine in the LM002 ...
(added on April 26. 2010)
The legendary Paris Dakar rally did have a Lamborghini entered ...
(added on January 1. 2012)
April 26. 2010
Text © Mark Smeyers
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