Preparations for the DTM Series are underway with the first pre-season test starting at Vallelunga, Italy.
Running from 1-3 March, it is the first opportunity teams have to get a feel of the cars for 2018.
New technical regulations have been introduced which see the minimum weight reduced and downforce cut by a third.
Champion René Rast and, third placed man in 2017, Jamie Green will be carrying out the testing duties in the Audi RS 5 DTM. Marco Wittmann will be doing all the running for BMW, with rookie Philipp Eng at hand. DTM returnee Pascal Wehrlein will be at the wheel of the Mercedes, as will Gary Paffett and Lucas Auer.
One of the key points of the test for the teams and drivers will be whether the changes made to the cars combined with aerodynamic adaptions will make the cars unstable under braking.
During the final tests at Hockenheim on 9-12 April, all 18 drivers will be behind the wheel of their machines, ahead of the season opener three weeks later (4-6 May) at the same venue.
The 2018 DTM season runs over ten weekends, five of which are in Germany, as the touring car series aims to expand its international interests. The return of Great Britain and Italy is important in the interests of the future of the DTM.