Ataxia telangiectasia-mutated (ATM) kinase is a master regulator of the DNA damage response. ATM is frequently inactivated in human B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphomas, including ~50% of mantle cell lymphomas (MCLs) characterized by ectopic expression of CyclinD1. Here we report that early and robust deletion of ATM in precursor/progenitor B cells causes cell autonomous, clonal mature B-cell lymphomas of both pre- and post-germinal center (GC) origins. Unexpectedly, naive B-cell-specific deletion of ATM is not sufficient to induce lymphomas in mice, highlighting the important tumor suppressor function of ATM in immature B cells. Although EμCyclinD1 is not sufficient to induce lymphomas, EμCyclinD1 accelerates the kinetics and increases the incidence of clonal lymphomas in ATM-deficient B-cells and skews the lymphomas toward pre-GC-derived small lymphocytic neoplasms, sharing morphological features of human MCL. This is in part due to CyclinD1-driven expansion of ATM-deficient naive B cells with genomic instability, which promotes the deletions of additional tumor suppressor genes (i.e. Trp53, Mll2, Rb1 and Cdkn2a). Together these findings define a synergistic function of ATM and CyclinD1 in pre-GC B-cell proliferation and lymphomagenesis and provide a prototypic animal model to study the pathogenesis of human MCL.