Mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) has a poor overall survival after treatment with conventional chemotherapy. Intense chemoimmunotherapy without consolidation stem cell transplantation is a potential therapeutic option. We report on a prospective Phase II study with rituximab in combination with fractionated cyclophosphamide, vincristine, doxorubicin and dexamethasone (R-Hyper-CVAD) alternating with rituximab in combination with high-dose methotrexate-cytarabine (R-MA) in untreated patients with diffuse and nodular MCL and their blastoid variants. Ninety-seven patients were treated, of whom 97% responded and 87% achieved a complete remission. At 10 years of follow up (median 8 years), the median overall survival (OS) for all patients had not been reached and the median time to failure (TTF) for all patients was 4.6 years, without a plateau in the curves. For the group of patients aged 65 years or younger, the median OS had not been reached and the median TTF was 5.9 years. Multivariate analysis revealed pre-treatment serum levels of beta(2) microglobulin, International Prognostic Index (IPI) score and mantle cell IPI (MIPI) score, as predictive of both OS and TTF. We conclude that intense chemoimmunotherapy without stem cell transplantation is effective for untreated aggressive MCL.