Mercedes motorsport boss Norbert Haug believes the manufacturer's dominance of the DTM this year was a result of the team not applying tactical orders among its leading cars.
Paul di Resta, Gary Paffett and Bruno Spengler fought a season-long battle for the title, and all three Mercedes drivers went into the season finale in China with a shot at the title. Audi is known for prioritising its drivers early in a season to maximize its title hopes, a strategy that helped it to three straight titles from 2007-'09. But Haug says Mercedes never considered changing its approach.
"We never drive only for one guy," Haug told AUTOSPORT. "This can cost you a title here and there but this is our philosophy, the same as Red Bull did it in Formula 1.
"To focus on one driver is a short-term decision. In the long term you will suffer because there is not the right motivation in your team. Not just with the drivers, but the engineers and the mechanics. They are all hugely competitive guys and we need them to stay this way.
"You can blame us for having taken points away from our own title chasing drivers at times, but this is our strategy."