Martin Tomczyk finished Saturday's DTM free practice session on top after a session that was dominated by Audi.
The German was one of several Audi drivers to be towards the top of the times throughout the session, and the manufacturer eventually locked out the top six places as Mercedes struggled to get on the pace.
Tomczyk's Abt Sportsline team-mate Timo Scheider was second fastest, while Markus Winkelhock's 2008 car was third ahead of Mattias Ekstrom, who moved up to fourth with his final lap of the session.
Team Phoenix drivers Alexandre Premat and Oliver Jarvis completed the top six in their year-old cars, while Jamie Green was the best of the Mercedes drivers in his 2008 C-class.
The Norisring race winner was half a second adrift of Tomczyk's time though, while the drivers of the 2009-spec Mercedes seemed to struggle even more.
Late runs from Bruno Spengler and Paul di Resta made sure that a couple of the HWA cars were in the top 10, while Ralf Schumacher and championship leader Gary Paffett were down in 13th and 14th place respectively, and nearly a second off the pace.
Di Resta only just made the top 10 after an interesting scrap with Tom Kristensen right at the end of practice. The pair swapped places three times as each completed their final run, but the Scot's final effort in the dying seconds was enough to demote the Audi driver.
Pos Driver Car Time Gap 1. Martin Tomczyk Audi 1m24.112s 2. Timo Scheider Audi 1m24.141s +0.029 3. Markus Winkelhock Audi 1m24.237s +0.125 4. Mattias Ekstrom Audi 1m24.271s +0.159 5. Alexandre Premat Audi 1m24.467s +0.355 6. Oliver Jarvis Audi 1m24.486s +0.374 7. Jamie Green Mercedes 1m24.606s +0.494 8. Mike Rockenfeller Audi 1m24.657s +0.545 9. Bruno Spengler Mercedes 1m24.672s +0.560 10. Paul di Resta Mercedes 1m24.694s +0.582 11. Tom Kristensen Audi 1m24.749s +0.637 12. Mathias Lauda Mercedes 1m24.914s +0.802 13. Ralf Schumacher Mercedes 1m25.018s +0.906 14. Gary Paffett Mercedes 1m25.045s +0.933 15. Katherine Legge Audi 1m25.176s +1.064 16. Maro Engel Mercedes 1m25.277s +1.165 17. Susie Stoddart Mercedes 1m25.487s +1.375 18. Christian Bakkerud Audi 1m25.643s +1.531 19. Johannes Seidlitz Audi 1m25.880s +1.768 20. Tomas Kostka Audi 1m26.083s +1.971