Bob and his BMW

By Brian Bonitto
Associate Editor — Auto & Entertainment

Friday, February 07, 2020

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PLUTO Shervington's easy, laid-back reggae style is in stark contrast to Bob Marley's fiery rebel music. But the two would cross paths due to a motor vehicle.

“I sold Bob his BMW. I had bought it used. I sold him that one and bought another one. I can't remember for how much I sold it to him for now,” Shervington, 69, told the Jamaica Observer's weekly Auto magazine from his Florida home earlier this week. “This was about '74 or '75... I think it's about '75.”

According to Shervington, he put out word that he wanted to sell the vehicle and the dealer contacted Marley. Both singers lived fairly close to each other in upper St Andrew, so Marley made the trek to see the vehicle.

“I lived on the opposite side from Bob on Hope Road, on Roseneath Avenue. So he just walked over, looked at it and fall in love with it,” said Shervington.

Shervington, who is celebrating 50 years in the music business, is known for hit songs including Ram Goat Liver, I Man Born Ya, and Dat, a humorous ditty about a Rastafarian buying pork.

The singer said he was parting with the German-made luxury vehicle due to its lack of speed.

“It was dark blue 2500 Bavaria 3.0 Si...It was a dog of a car. It was one of the slowest BMW ever made. It had AC (air conditioning) but didn't have power steering,” he said.

Manufactured by BMW (Bavarian Motor Works) from 1968 to 1977, the Bavaria 3.0 is a line of full-size luxury sedans and grand tourer coupés (two door). All models used the then-new M30 straight-6 engine. It marked BMW's return to the full-size luxury sedan market after a hiatus of five years and was introduced as a response to a growing market segment dominated by Mercedes-Benz. It was important in establishing BMW's reputation as a maker of sporting, luxury sedans.

According to the factory, it has a top speed of 190 km/h (118 mph). It accelerates from 0- 60 mph in 9.8 seconds and 0- 100 km/h in 10.4 s.

“One day I was driving and I see like the car coming down Hope Road with dreadlocks flying out of the window,” Shervington said with a chuckle. “Bob was happy with it.”

In a previous interview with Jamaica Observer's weekly Auto, Marley's former road manager Alan “Skill” Cole said the reggae king was a bit apprehensive to get behind the BMW's wheel.

“At the time, Rastas were still pushing handcarts,” he said, so Cole had to convince Marley that “those days were gone”.

Shervington said he last spoke to Marley days before he died.

“I called him while he was in a hospital bed in Miami in 1981 and hail him up and to find out if he's alright... he died 12 days later,” Shervington said.

Marley died May 11, 1981. Yesterday, February 6, was the 75th anniversary of his birth.

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