Isuzu Panther 2002 – The Last Form of My Soulmate

It’s been 5 months already, since I sold my family-owned car, Isuzu Panther LV 2002. A car that in its last years was purposedly built to support my parents, and also brought back its own true form. Honestly, I didn’t spent munch on this one. But the process, the fun, and the story sometimes brought back tears in my head.

As you might known my story (previously here), this Isuzu Panther LV 2002 had been with my family for more than 16 years. Started as a company owned car, and driven by one of the manager at my dad’s employer. Then, the car was given to my dad as he’s stepped in for the role. At last, this car had served the owner of it’s maximum potentials. Especially when the car was given to my dad around 2007, he / we drove it a lot. From business reasons, family, or even just a round trip to Puncak with my mom and dad. We recorded for more than 600.000 kilo-meters on that car.

The Isuzu Panther itself declared as a pioneer of diesel MPV in Indonesia. With its conventional engine, they declared to be reliable, efficient, and strong enough to dive into the flood. Many companies or even business owner interested to have these type of car. Until that son of a gun Toyota Inova Diesel came around, Panther was like a ‘primadonna’ for diesel lovers. But there are so many downsides with this car. The vibrations, the rusts, the low-powered engines, and the lack of modern features, lay down to dust with this car.

Then, in 2020, I decided to restore this piece of our family history. It took me 6 months to restore it. Then months after months to perfected the restorations. Why? Simple. This car was our family soulmate. The from-factory white color that aged within years, the white smokes that came out of it’s exhaust, and all of the tiny bits of aging interior that talks about memory of the past.

Why didn’t I just scrap it, and save money for a newer car instead? Maybe because I romanticized my relationship with this car? Then, I remember all of the moments that I’ve been through with this car. Turns out there are so many important moments that I’ve been through with this car.


This car was the first car that I took a girl out. A beautiful moments to remember. Then, I remember that some trips that my Dad took with me, my mom, my half-brother, my half-sister, and their kid in this one particular car. This car also help me and my dad rescuing my dying grandpa to the hospital. Finally, I realized that this car is functional. Nothing special with the engine, power, or features. But it serves at a functional transportations that helping me and my family through the years. We survived the world because of this car. Such a nice 600k kilometers of journey.


But sadly, this story ends here. We finally decided to sold this car due to my dad’s conditions that need a smaller car with automatic transmissions. Driving this Isuzu Panther as a daily, is not a good option for a 77 years old man. We sold this car less than a month after I bought it a set of local made Compomotive wheels. The guy who bought it was very far. He even came with a bus just to see and made a deal with us.


Sometimes, I still think about how this car doing now. My mom also told me that sometimes, she wondered how this car doing now. We kinda missed this car. Missed the sound, and missed the history that we’ve been through with this.


But, all we can do is just reminisce it and being grateful about it. So, thank you My old Isuzu Panther LV. You served well.



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