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HERITAGE Best known as one of the world's most iconic musicians, Bob Marley was also a keen automobile enthusiast PHOTOS: GETTY IMAGES/KIRK WEST/CONTRIBUTOR, AUTO-MEDIENPORTAL.NET, JOHN WYCHERLEY upbringing in the rural Saint Ann Parish on Jamaica’s north coast. Known mostly for its status as an unprecedented hotbed of reggae talent – the birthplace of Burning Spear, Shabba Ranks and even Marcus Mosiah Garvey himself – Saint Ann is also the most agricultural and rugged of Jamaica’s districts. To fully appreciate its rural beauty, Marley would’ve required an erstwhile off-roader to get himself around, a preference he clearly carried into adulthood. While Marley’s Series III had been left mostly untouched, he (or members of the Marley household) elected to modify the colour of his Range Rover. “Now we’ve extracted Marley’s Range Rover, we can fully appreciate his own, personal paint job,” says McKechnie. “Black on the bonnet, green on most of the door panels, dark blue on the roof – we’ve never really seen anything like it before.” Further research conducted by Classic Works revealed that it wasn’t Marley himself who got busy with the paintbrush – he actually left that to his children. The paint job on this particular Range Rover comes courtesy of Stephen, Rohan and Julian Marley, all of whom were still of junior school age when they “MARLEY LEFT picked up their brushes. They THE PAINTJOB TO all recall fondly how their father would ferry them to school, HIS CHILDREN” football and the various clubs they were members of in the car they decorated themselves. Indeed, the Range Rover and the Series III left a lasting impression on Rohan, who’s now a coffee grower and plantation owner in Jamaica’s Portland parish – quite the deviation from his previous career as an American footballer. “I love driving through the coffee fields in my Land Rover,” Rohan told the BBC at a 70th anniversary celebration concert for his father, which featured his restored Series III as the centrepiece. “You see farmers driving in their 1970s Land Rovers,” he added. “You just can’t kill them – they keep going and going.” The next chapter in the life story of the newly discovered Range Rover is still being written. “Firstly, we have to decide on the colour – do we keep the Marley family mural or do we go all the way back to the production line and Masai Red,” confides McKechnie. “Then, we have a number of options, including putting the car up for auction, donating it to the Bob Marley Museum or adding it to our own collection. I’m a huge Marley fan and I’ve already started to develop something of an attachment.” CASE FILE: THE OTHER MARLEY LAND ROVER The extracted Range Rover (top) now awaiting restoration at Classic Works is not the first Marley Land Rover to have risen from the deep. The blue 1976 Series III (above) was restored in 2015, and even starred in a free concert to celebrate what would have been Marley’s 70th birthday. Sandals Resorts International, which operates Jamaica’s Land Rover dealership, collaborated with ATL Automotive’s master Land Rover technician Stephen James, US parts supplier Rovers North, as well as Marley’s family, to rebuild the vehicle. While it’s not the millimetre-perfect, ground-up kind of restoration you’d get from Classic Works, it still looks ready to relive its glory days in the Jamaican countryside. FIND OUT MORE Follow Land Rover’s global social media channels to see updates on Marley’s Range Rover later this year. To enquire about restoring your own heritage vehicle, visit jaguarlandroverclassic.com 69
Land Rover Magazine showcases stories from around the world that celebrate inner strength and the drive to go Above and Beyond.
In this issue, New Defender is put through its paces by two inspirational young adventurers as they prepare for an expedition to the South Pole. We also celebrate 50 years of Range Rover by taking a journey of discovery to Dubai. As well as looking back, we look to future as a group of visionaries explain the technologies that could change the future for all of us.