Kenyan Wilson Kipsang made the most of the flat and fast Berlin streets to smash the marathon world record by 15 seconds en route taking the title on Sunday.
The 31-year-old Kipsang clocked a time of two hours three minutes and 23 seconds to better the previous mark set by compatriot Patrick Makau in the same race two years ago.
Kipsang, who won the 2012 London Marathon and also took bronze at the Olympics, produced a storming finish to leave compatriot Eliud Kipchoge a distant second almost a minute behind.
Kenyan Tergat's time of 2:04:55 at the 2003 Berlin Marathon was the first to be ratified as a world record by governing body the IAAF, who previously recognised fastest marathon times as world bests.
Makau's mark had looked safe as the leading bunch dropped more than 20 seconds off the pace after 30 kilometres but they clawed back the deficit over the next five kilometres.
With the group whittled down to three runners, Kipsang made his decisive move at the 37 km mark and held off former 5,000 metres world champion Kipchoge before pulling well clear in the final two kilometres. Kipchoge's time of 2:04:05 was a personal best with Geoffrey Kipsang third in 2:06:26.
In the women's race, Kenya's Florence Kiplagat took the title after she overcame a duel with compatriot Sharon Cherop, who faded to finish 45 seconds back. Kiplagat repeated her 2011 success in Berlin with another strong run but her time of 2:21:13 was six minutes shy of the women's world record set by Briton Paula Radcliffe a decade ago.
Results: Men: Wilson Kipsang Kiprotich (Kenya) 2:03:23 WR 1; Eliud Kipchoge (Kenya) 2:04:05, 2; Geoffrey Kipsang (Kenya) 2:06:26, 3.
Women: Florence Kiplagat (Kenya) 2:21:13, 1; Sharon Cherop (Kenya) 2:22:28, 2; Irina Mikitenko (Germany) 2:24:54, 3.