Bruno Spengler led a Mercedes one-two in DTM qualifying at Dijon, as the championship fight was blown wide open with leader Timo Scheider down in 16th.
Paul di Resta backed his team-mate up in the crucial fourth segment of qualifying to complete the sweep, while the Audis of Tom Kristensen and Mattias Ekstrom had to settle for row two.
The session took place with drizzle in the air, leading to constantly changing track conditions in each of the four segments. That caught out several drivers through qualifying, but Scheider was the most-high profile to struggle as he battled a wet setup on a dry track at the end of Q1.
With the Audi driver out of action early on, it was a golden opportunity for Ekstrom and Gary Paffett to get up front and have a chance of prolonging the title fight beyond this weekend, but neither was able to grab top spot. While Ekstrom (who is 12 points back) at least did enough to make the pole shootout, Paffett (14 adrift) missed the best of the track conditions in Q3 and could manage no better than eighth.
Mercedes appeared to be in a very strong position heading into Q3, with only two Audis getting into the top eight. However, Ekstrom and Kristensen made sure that two Audis also made it into the top four, minimising the damage.
Maro Engel and Ralf Schumacher were initially on course to make Q4 before Spengler and di Resta snuck in at the end, but the pair will line up together on the third row with each taking the best qualifying performance of their DTM careers.
Jamie Green had starred in the first two segments in his 2008-spec C-class, but after struggling like Paffett in Q3 he will line up just ahead of his countryman in seventh.