Michael Schumacher said that he had no idea Vitaly Petrov was going to hit him and had no way of avoiding the accident which resulted in the pair's retirement and provoked a safety car on the lap 16.
The German was taken out of the race by the Renault driver when Petrov tried to pass him at Turn 3, but instead collected the Mercedes and terminally damaging both cars.
The Russian was later given a five-place grid penalty for his part in the accident.
"I didn't see Vitaly coming," said Schumacher. "I was just suddenly spun into a direction I had not intended to go, and then I saw my rear wing hanging off. It was unfortunate but these things happen when you fight hard - that's racing."
"Another unfortunate end to a race which could have been encouraging today," he added. "It's a big pity as the car was again very good in race trim and I had already gained some positions.
"It would have been interesting to see what was possible, and I think we could certainly have taken some points."
Team-mate Nico Rosberg said a flat spot on his left-front tyre during his second stint in the Korean Grand Prix which was the cause of him fading out of contention for fourth position in the middle of the race.
Rosberg had started the race strongly, and battled with Jenson Button and the two Ferraris for fourth early on. But pushed too hard after pitting for prime tyres while in fifth position ahead of the Ferraris and damaged his front left and forced him into pitting earlier than planned, which then left him powerless to keep up with the group he was racing with later on.
"I had good speed at the start of the race today but after we changed to the prime tyres, it became more difficult as the degradation was too strong," he said. "I had some nice battles against Jenson and the Ferraris, and was pushing hard to defend my position against Felipe and Fernando in the middle stint. During this, I flat-spotted my front tyres so I had to pit earlier than expected which made my last stint on the primes very long.
"I didn't have enough grip by the end and so I just wasn't able to defend the position against Jaime. A difficult race for me today but I'm still happy to score some points."