World champion Sebastien Loeb led after the first day of the Rally of Germany on Friday, more than 20 seconds ahead of Ford driver Petter Solberg of Norway.
The Frenchman, top of the overall standings in his Citroen as he guns for his ninth straight title with five races left, has won the German rally eight times in the last nine outings.
Loeb took four stages on the day after dodging any problems.
Finland's Mikko Hirvonen, second overall in his Citroen, could only finish sixth on the first of three days' racing through the bumpy lanes of the Mosel vineyards.
He stalled on the start line of stage four.