As you're probably aware by now, 2012 marks the dawning of a new era for the DTM. The technical regulations that were devised for the category's return 12 years ago and have featured only minor tweaks since then have been thrown out, to be replaced with an all-new rulebook dictating cheaper, safer cars with fewer driver aids and aerodynamics and even a number of spec parts - 57 in all.
Of more significance to the fans is the return of BMW after 20 years away (although this would not have happened without the rule changes) and its recruitment of star drivers Bruno Spengler and Martin Tomczyk.
Twenty-two cars are set to line up on the grid at Hockenheim on Sunday, with four previous champions heading a host of experienced and rookie hopefuls for the three competing manufacturers: Audi, Mercedes and BMW.
To continue reading this feature, subscribe to Autosport Plus today.
Are you an Autosport magazine subscriber? Activate your online account
- Your Autosport Plus subscription includes:
- Unlimited access to Autosport's news - no monthly cap.
- Read the best motorsport features, analysis and opinion.
- Explore Forix, our comprehensive motorsport stats database.
- Choose from a monthly or yearly membership.