Peugeot's Carlos Sainz extended his Rally Morocco lead by topping the third stage, while teammate Sebastien Loeb hit trouble early on in the day.
Loeb, whose chances of a good finish had been ruined by a mechanical failure on the openingday, rolled his Peugeot 2008DKR at the 68km mark.
His car was stranded there for three hours before he finally rejoined the rally, only to then roll again 14km from the finish, damaging one of his front wheels in the process.
Fellow WRC convert Mikko Hirvonen led the stage at the first split in his X-Raid Mini, but eventually slipped behind Sainz and Nasser Al-Attiyah, finishing the day in third place.
In the overall classification, Sainz now heads Al-Attiyah by five minutes, with nearest rival Vladimir Vasilyev a full 22 minutes in third - and with only a seven second gap over fellow Toyota driver Yazeed Al-Rajhi.
Former Dakar winner Giniel de Villiers rounds off the top five, while Hirvonen's strong showing allowed him to move up from 10th to seventh, 35 minutes adrift of Sainz.
Erik van Loon, who started the day in fifth, was another major name to encounter difficulties, losing two hours due to a mechanical problem.
Overall classification after Day 3
Giniel de Villiers
Dirk von Zitzewitz