Now this is probably borderline asb, but what do we have to do to unite Germany as a cohesive nation state (or at least kingdom), separate from the HRE before the 1700s? With or without austria, your choice.

Now the easiest would probably be preventing Otto I's forming of the Holy Roman Empire, which also happens to leave italy militarily independent for longer if it wanted to survive. But I'm curious about any other plausible scenarios.

Bonus points if you can do it without a France screw
 
Holy Roman Empire of Ottonian days or a Bavaria-wank would work. Habsburgs coming into Germany might do the trick via the Burgundian area or Spanish Netherlands might be a consideration too.
 
If the Holy Roman Empire of the German Empire got centralized under the Holy Roman Emperor, then maybe historians today would not think that Germany was ever disunited, at least no more than France was disunited before the time of PHilip Augustus.
 
Top