Pangoro is a large bipedal Pokémon resembling a humanoid panda bear. It has a stocky build with a round belly, short legs, and long arms with large paws. Its head and belly are covered in thick white fur, while its lower body, chest, arms, and back are covered in equally thick dark gray fur. A long cape of this dark gray fur hangs down behind its back; in combination with the rest of the dark-furred pattern, this gives the impression that Pangoro is wearing a long coat and trousers. Pangoro's three-fingered paws have shorter, darker fur and are tipped with black claws. It has a blunt snout with a triangular black nose, rounded black ears, prominent fangs in its lower jaw, and black semicircles under its brow that make its eyes indistinguishable. Pangoro likes to carry a thin-stemmed shoot with two leaves in its mouth. This small bamboo shoot is used to sense the movements of those around it.
Despite its cantankerous demeanor, Pangoro is kind to those it considers to be its friends and it does not tolerate those who pick on the weak. With arms powerful enough to snap a telephone pole, it charges into battle like a berserker, heedless of any damage it might suffer. Pangoro can destroy a dump truck in one punch and utilizes this strength when pummeling its opponents. Many Trainers find themselves smitten with its lively nature; however, those who wish to train a Pangoro for themselves will have to fight one. It lives to engage in duels with Obstagoon. Pangoro and its pre-evolved form, Pancham, are the only known Pokémon capable of learning Arm Thrust in Pokémon Sword and Shield. In the past, Parting Shot held this status.
Pangoro seems to be based on a giant panda. Considering how its pre-evolution needs to be around Dark-type Pokémon as a prerequisite for its evolution, its hot-blooded, belligerent, yet virtuous attitude, and features such as a coat-like cape and chewing stick, Pangoro also appears to draw inspiration from banchō, Japanese juvenile-delinquent leaders. The method of evolution may imply that the pure Fighting-type Pancham acquired its Dark type after evolution due to being led astray by a "bad influence". Its Shiny coloration could be a reference to the Qinling panda, whose coloring tends to be more brown than black.
Pangoro and Goronda may be a combination of ごろつき gorotsuki (rogue), ごろごろ gorogoro (rumbling sound), and panda.