The most important factor contributing to the low death rate is that Germany appears to be that it is testing far more people than any other European country.
Scientists agree that a large number — probably a big majority — of all coronavirus cases never make it into the official figures because they are not severe enough for hospital treatment.
The more widely a country tests, the more of these milder cases it will find.
Since the most severe cases are almost always tested, the number of coronavirus deaths will likely stay the same.
The net effect is that more testing leads to a lower-looking death rate.
Christian Drosten, director of the institute of virology at Berlin's Charité hospital estimates that Germany is testing 120,000 people a week. The German doctors' association says at least 200,000 coronavirus tests were carried out in recent weeks, The Independent reported.
"I believe that we are just testing much more than in other countries, and we are detecting our outbreak early," Drosten told NPR.
"We have a culture here in Germany that is actually not supporting a centralized diagnostic system," Drosten said. "So Germany does not have a public health laboratory that would restrict other labs from doing the tests. So we had an open market from the beginning."
The US had tested 626,667 people by March 28, according to the COVID Tracking Project. The figure has ramped up significantly in recent days, but still lags Germany's rate given that the US outbreak is now the biggest in the world.
Spain distributed 650,000 testing kits, but sent back a batch bought from China on Thursday after they discovered they were only identifying 30% of positive cases. It is not yet known how many tests have been carried out there overall.
80% of all people infected in Germany are younger than 60, the Robert Koch Institute said on Monday, indicating that the outbreak hasn't yet taken hold in older people, where the risk of death is much higher.
In Spain the number of affected over-60s is around 50%.
It's early in the cycle
Compared to countries like Spain and Italy, Germany is at an earlier stage of the outbreak.
"Germany's also a little bit earlier on in the process than Italy," Martin Hibberd, professor of emerging infectious diseases at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, told Wired. "It takes two or three weeks of intensive care before people often succumb to the disease."
March 26 was Germany's worst day so far with 6,615 new cases reported. It seems likely that the daily number of cases will continue to rise.
Angela Merkel said on Thursday that it was too early to ease a lockdown that was put in place on Tuesday, according to German broadcaster Deutsche Welle. The infection rate was still increasing, Merkel said, but was likely to subside in the first week of April.
"The death rate in Germany is likely to increase as more older people become infected", Keith Neal, emeritus professor of epidemiology of infectious diseases at the University of Nottingham, told Sky News.
"The true death rate is probably going to be in the order of 1%."