Polesitter Wittmann, as well as made a start so swift that it put him under investigation as he powered his R-Motorsport Aston Martin Vantage into the lead down Paddock Hill Bend.
At the end of the first lap, Di Resta established a lead of almost one second over and defensive driving allowed the underpowered Vantage to hold onto an unlikely lead through the first phase of the race.
Di Resta would concede the lead once he made his mandatory pitstop on the 16th lap of 42, serving a five-second penalty for his jumped start, but Wittmann had to work his way back into the net lead having stopped two laps earlier.
The crucial move came when Wittmann steered his BMW through a narrow gap caused by the early-stopping running wide at Paddock Hill Bend, opening up space for the two-time DTM champion to power past the Audi driver and then-net leader Rast.
Once the pitstops had shaken out, Wittmann had a lead of over five seconds to Rast.
A slow lap from Wittmann late in the race allowed Rast to close to within three seconds and the Audi driver loomed large behind the BMW driver on the final lap. But Rast was unable to find a way past and crossed the line just 0.3s behind Wittmann.
Rast had put himself into position to hound Wittmann by picking off two Audi stablemates on the run to Hawthorns in quick succession following his mandatory pitstop.
He first passed pulled off a similar move to Rast to take fourth late on.
Rockenfeller finished seventh and the top 10 was rounded out by BMW's .
Juncadella's points finish was aided by an as-yet unexplained retirement for Di Resta late on, who joined his teammates in the garage.
Habsburg retired not long after an off at the exit of Sheene, while Juncadella's rapid start pushed BMW's into the R-Motorsport driver's teammate Dennis.
Dennis then collided with the pitwall and damaged the rear of his car, forcing him into retirement.
WRT's also failed to start the race.
BMW had replaced Wittmann's engine ahead of the Brands Hatch race and introduced two spare power units, which means it cannot count the points from Wittmann, Eng or van der Linde towards its manufacturers' total.
|1||11|| Marco Wittmann ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||42||56'39.275|
|2||33|| René Rast ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||42||56'39.649|
|3||51|| Nico Müller ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||42||56'47.841|
|4||4|| Robin Frijns ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||42||56'54.921|
|5||28|| Loic Duval ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||42||56'57.511|
|6||25|| Philipp Eng ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||42||56'58.088|
|7||99|| Mike Rockenfeller ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||42||56'59.331|
|8||31|| Sheldon Van Der Linde ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||42||57'09.184|
|9||27|| Jonathan Aberdein ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||42||57'16.362|
|10||23|| Daniel Juncadella ||Aston Martin Vantage DTM||42||57'16.660|
|11||53|| Jamie Green ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||42||57'28.271|
|12||7|| Bruno Spengler ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||42||57'31.740|
|13||16|| Timo Glock ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||42||57'44.512|
|14||3|| Paul di Resta ||Aston Martin Vantage DTM||39||53'07.948|
|15||62|| Ferdinand Habsburg ||Aston Martin Vantage DTM||38||54'02.057|
|76|| Jake Dennis ||Aston Martin Vantage DTM|
|View full results|