Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg flew to his sixth successive pole position during qualifying for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
Rosberg was ahead during both Q3 runs and ended with a 1:40.237, 0.377s clear of team-mate Lewis Hamilton.
Kimi Räikkönen was third for Ferrari as team-mate Sebastian Vettel fell at the first hurdle in Q1 as the outfit underestimated improvements rivals made on Option tyres.
Sergio Pérez was a superb fourth for Force India as he equalled his best qualifying result, with Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo in fifth.
Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa were split by Nico Hülkenberg as Daniil Kvyat and Carlos Sainz Jr. completed the top 10.
Max Verstappen missed out on a Q3 slot by just 0.039s while Jenson Button was 12th for McLaren.
Pastor Maldonado claimed 13th position, ahead of Sauber driver Felipe Nasr.
Romain Grosjean suffered a mechanical problem in his Lotus E23 Hybrid during the early stages of Q2; Lotus sent him back out on track for a final run but he was forced to park by the side of the circuit.
Vettel set a banker lap on Prime tyres but was shuffled down the order and will start from only 16th on the grid as Ferrari miscalculated the improvements rivals made on Options.
Fernando Alonso was on course to escape Q1 but suffered a puncture along the second back straight and had to retire from the pits, with his initial lap good enough for only 17th spot.
Marcus Ericsson also encountered a problem with his Sauber and was left down in 18th while Will Stevens out-qualified Roberto Merhi but will start behind his team-mate after Manor Marussia changed his Control Electronics, thus incurring an academic five-place penalty.