Loeb called time in his glittering full-time career in the WRC at the end of the 2012 season after a record nine titles with Citroen, earning his place among the all-time greats of motorsport.
The Frenchman went on to compete in four WRC events the following year and continues to make one-off appearances in the championship to this date, adding four more wins to his impressive tally-including the most recent at the Monte Carlo season opener in January.
He also participated in a variety of tin-top championships the following season, most notably driving a McLaren MP4-12C GT3 in the FIA GT series with his own team in 2013 before embarking on a two-year World tenure. Touring Car Championship with Citroen.
However, Loeb’s post-WRC career could look very different, with the 48-year-old revealed in an exclusive interview that he may have gone to DTM in 2013 with BMW, a year after the manufacturer Munich -based won the title in its first season in the category.
“One time I talked to some manufacturers at DTM to get into the championship,” Loeb said of Motorsport.com’s sister title Motorsport-Total.com in a video interview. “That was almost 10 years ago, when I had just retired from the WRC.
“Finally, we decided to do something different, but I kind of looked at DTM a long time ago.
“I’m talking to BMW. I think it’s pretty close [to striking a deal]. Finally, I decided to move on to the WRC [part-time] and it stopped our conversation. “
Martin Tomczyk, BMW Team RMG, BMW M3 DTM
Photo by: BMW AG
Loeb made his DTM debut this month when he drove an AF Corse-run Ferrari 488 GT3 in Portimao, which Red Bull asked to replace absent Nick Cassidy in the team’s line-up.
The Frenchman finished 16th and 18th in two races in Portugal, and even qualified within eight tenths from the post in the first qualifying session of the weekend.
Having closely followed his performances, AF Corse leader Ron Reichert was quite impressed with Loeb’s ability to carve out traffic after a safety car restarted in Race 1, jumping from 21st to 13th spot in a lap.
“Seb’s onboard camera at the restart of the first race was the video I watched the most this weekend,” he told Motorsport-Total.com.
“He developed six or seven positions in the process-and the feeling he had was incredible,” Reichert said of his driver, who climbed from 21st to 13th in one lap.
“He wasn’t expecting the start, he was looking forward to what would happen in front of him on the track, where the other cars would go, who might have contact. He drove as if he knew what was going to happen.”