The name was coined by Ellenberger in 1970, and the "type species" is "Likhoelesaurus ingens". It is named after the town in Lesotho where the fossils were found. The only fossils recovered have been teeth, from the late Carnian-early Norian-age Lower Elliot Formation.
Ellenberger (1972) regarded the genus as a giant carnosaur, and Kitching and Raath (1984) treated it as possibly referable to Basutodon. Knoll listed "Likhoelesaurus" as a rauisuchian, also he noted that could also be a rauisuchian.
- Ellenberger, 1970. Les niveaux paléontologiques de première apparition des mammifères primoridaux en Afrique du Sud et leur ichnologie. Establissement de zones stratigraphiques detaillees dans le Stormberg du Lesotho (Afrique du Sud) (Trias Supérieur à Jurassique) [The paleontological levels of the first appearance of primordial mammals in southern Africa and their ichnology. Establishment of detailed stratigraphic zones in the Stormberg of Lesotho (southern Africa) (Upper Triassic to Jurassic). in Haughton (ed.). Second Symposium on Gondwana Stratigraphy and Paleontology, International Union of Geological Sciences. Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Pretoria. 343-370.
- Ellenberger and Ginsberg, 1966. Le gisement de Dinosauriens triasiques de Maphutseng (Basutoland) et l'origine des Sauropodes [The Triassic dinosaur locality of Maphutseng (Basutoland) and the origin of sauropods]. Comptes Rendus de l'Académie des Sciences à Paris, Série D. 262, 444-447.
- Ellenberger, 1972. Contribution à la classification des Pistes de Vertébrés du Trias: Les types du Stormberg d'Afrique du Sud (I). Palaeovertebrata. 104, 152 pp.
- Kitching and Raath, 1984. Fossils from the Elliot and Clarens Formations (Karoo Sequence) of the Northeastern Cape, Orange Free State and Lesotho, and a suggested biozonation based on tetrapods. Palaeontologia Africana. 25, 111-125.
- Knoll, 2004. Review of the tetrapod fauna of the "Lower Stormberg Group" of the main Karoo Basin (southern Africa): Implication for the age of the Lower Elliot Formation. Bulletin de la Societe Geologique de France. 175(1), 73-83.
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