Kimi Raikkonen grabbed a sensational pole position as McLaren continued to dominate at the German Grand Prix.
LEADING GRID POSITIONS
1 K Raikkonen 1:14.320
2 J Button 1:14.759
3 F Alonso 1:14.904
4 G Fisichella 1:14.927
5 M Schumacher 1:15.006
6 M Webber 1:15.070
The Finn, who was fastest in practice on both Friday and Saturday, lapped in one minute 14.320 seconds to beat Jenson Button's BAR by 0.439secs.
Button's impressively committed lap demoted Raikkonen's title rival Fernando Alonso of Renault to third.
Alonso's team-mate Giancarlo Fisichella was fourth, while McLaren's Juan Pablo Montoya crashed at the final corner.
Michael Schumacher was fifth fastest in his Ferrari at his home Grand Prix, ahead of the Williams drivers Mark Webber and Nick Heidfeld.
Takuma Sato's BAR, the Toyota of Jarno Trulli and Christian Klien's Red Bull completed the top 10.
Austrian Klien was just ahead of team-mate David Coulthard.
Montoya's error came as he was attempting to wrest pole from Raikkonen.
But it means that the Colombian will now not be able to take points off Alonso in the championship.
Raikkonen said he was relieved to be on pole after suffering a 10-place grid penalty following engine failures at each of the last two races.
"It's nice - the last two races we should have been up here as well but in the circumstances it was not possible," he said.
"The car was not perfect but it was good enough. I had a little oversteer in a couple of corners, so I wasn't that happy with it, but that's normal and it didn't slow me down too much."
Button put in an impressive lap to line up on the front row
Button, who was also on the front row at the British Grand Prix two weeks ago, said he was not quick enough to challenge Raikkonen or Alonso in the race.
"I wouldn't say my lap was the best - we had a bit too much front end on the car," Button said
"I had a few moments, especially coming into the stadium, but it's nice to be on the front row and my aim is to be a bit closer to Renault and McLaren than we were at Silverstone.
"We've made some progress but it's not enough to challenge them yet. Hopefully we can keep impriving and maybe challenge them before the end of the year."
Alonso said he would have been on the front row alongside Raikkonen had it not been for his car catching him unawares in the 125mph first corner.
"I lost nearly 0.3-0.4secs in Turn One, so it was not really perfect in the first corner or while braking for Turn Two," the Spaniard said.
"After that I knew I had to push it for the rest of the lap and that was enough for third.
"Normally it would have been enough for the front row, but actually I am happy to be on the clean side of the track."
Full qualifying result from the German Grand Prix:
1 Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) McLaren-Mercedes 1:14.320
2 Jenson Button (GB) BAR-Honda 1:14.759
3 Fernando Alonso (Spa) Renault 1:14.904
4 Giancarlo Fisichella (Ita) Renault 1:14.927
5 Michael Schumacher (Ger) Ferrari 1:15.006
6 Mark Webber (Aus) Williams-BMW 1:15.070
7 Nick Heidfeld (Ger) Williams-BMW 1:15.403
8 Takuma Sato (Jpn) BAR-Honda 1:15.501
9 Jarno Trulli (Ita) Toyota 1:15.532
10 Christian Klien (Aut) Red Bull 1:15.635
11 David Coulthard (GB) Red Bull 1:15.679
12 Ralf Schumacher (Ger) Toyota 1:15.689
13 Felipe Massa (Brz) Sauber-Petronas 1:16.009
14 Jacques Villeneuve (Can) Sauber-Petronas 1:16.012
15 Rubens Barrichello (Bra) Ferrari 1:16.230
16 Christijan Albers (Ned) Minardi-Cosworth 1:17.519
17 Robert Doornbos (Ned) Minardi-Cosworth 1:18.313
18 Tiago Monteiro (Por) Jordan-Toyota 1:18.599
19 Juan Pablo Montoya (Col) McLaren-Mercedes no time
20 Narain Karthikeyan (Ind) Jordan-Toyota no time