The March team withdrew from the race after the accident which had claimed the life of Roger Williamson the previous weekend at the Dutch Grand Prix. Also missing were Ferrari, Ensign, Tecno and Hesketh. To boost the field, McLaren, Brabham and Surtees were all running three cars. Ferrari had released Jacky Ickx to drive for McLaren for the weekend, Brabham was running Rolf Stommelen in a third car (replacing Andrea de Adamich) while Surtees ran Jochen Mass.
Briton Jackie Stewart took his 27th and last grand prix victory in this race. This was a record that stood for fourteen years until Frenchman Alain Prost finally surpassed it in 1987.
New Zealander Howden Ganley heavily crashed his Williams/Iso-Marlboro-Ford and the car could not be repaired in time for the race.
Austrian Niki Lauda had outqualified his next-fastest teammate Jean-Pierre Beltoise by 8.2 seconds, but due to a suspension failure, he crashed at Kesselchen on the second lap, escaping with a broken wrist, but this accident forced him to miss his home race 2 weeks later.
Belgian Jacky Ickx and Swede Ronnie Peterson battled for 3rd on the first lap, but at Breidscheid the failure of the alternator on Peterson's Lotus put him out of the race. He went across the Adenauer Bridge and stopped at Ex-Mühle, and spent the next 3 laps trying to fix the car.
First run of the German Grand Prix with limited advertising for all cigarette brands. For the next German Grand Prix, it had been banned in Germany, but it would return to the German Grand Prix in 1999 until being banned again from the 2006 race onwards.
The race was rebroadcast in 2003 in the USA on Speed Channel as a special broadcast of their Formula 1 retrospective, Formula One Decade. Commentary was by Jackie Stewart and David Hobbs.
Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings. Only the best 7 results from the first 8 races and the best 6 results from the last 7 races counted towards the Championship. Numbers without parentheses are Championship points; numbers in parentheses are total points scored.