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31DTM steps into new era (and maybe America) as new racers debut at Hockenheim

DTM is one of Germany's best-kept secrets. The series features (ostensibly) production-based touring cars piloted by a mix of up-and-coming talents and retired Formula One drivers around some of Europe's finest racing circuits. But the series won't be a secret for long as a number of developments aim to up its profile.

21DTM champ Mattias Ekström swaps tin-tops for NASCAR

If we've said it once, we've said it a thousand times, but it warrants repeating – in context especially – that there exists an ocean of difference between stock car racing in America and touring cars overseas. And we're talking about more than geography here. The cars are different, the tracks are different, the drivers, the fans... and so too is the racing. But the two are about to take one step closer when two-time DTM champion Mattias Ekström takes on NASCAR.

10With F1 behind it, BMW planning return to DTM in 2012

BMW M3 GT2 in ALMS – Click above for high-res image gallery

4Coulthard takes to the tin-tops for Mercedes DTM

Formula One drivers have a relatively short career span. Sure, they're starting younger and younger, but few driving aces extend their careers beyond their early thirties, if that long. David Coulthard is one notable exception, retiring after 15 consecutive seasons in F1 at "the ripe old age" of 37.

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