Timo Scheider has claimed a sensational pole position for Audi in the changeable conditions at Hockenheim.
Qualifying had started in the wet but conditions improved throughout the session ensuring a dry Q4 one-lap shootout.
Scheider, who was penultimate driver to set a one-lap flyer during Q4 in his Abt Sportsline RS-5, negotiated the Hockenheimring with a 1 minute 35.918 second lap on the option tyre.
The German's eleventh career pole-position was his first since Zandvoort last year.
Augusto Farfus was BMW's top qualifier and shares the front row with the former double-champion, just over a tenth shy off the ultimate pace.
Christian Vietoris completed the top three despite being the final driver to set a time during Q4.
Mattias Ekstrom was the fastest victim of Q3 in fifth as the always-improving track conditions led to a roller coaster of a session with all ten drivers electing for slick tyres during the penultimate qualifying segment.
Defending and vice champions Bruno Spengler and Gary Paffett also fell afoul of the unpredictable conditions with the Mercedes man narrowly getting the better of Spengler's BMW in sixth and seventh.
Pascal Wehrlein looked hugely impressive and at ease during the trying conditions and line ups in a very solid eighth position on his DTM debut.
BMW's Joey Hand and Mercedes rookie Daniel Juncadella completed the top ten.
Q2 also claimed big names in the shape of former champion Martin Tomczyk in eleventh and Jamie Green on his Audi debut in twelfth.
Former F1-star Timo Glock posted a time good enough for 15th in his MTEK run BMW on his maiden DTM outing.
British favourite Andy Priaulx was agonisingly knocked out of Q2 in the dying seconds by the charging Juncadella.
Roberto Mehri became a casualty of his own making after losing the rear end of his Mercedes while entering the stadium and subsequently hitting the wall. The Spaniard was able to take part later in the session after limping back for repairs but was still one of the bottom six drivers not to make it through Q1.
Another of the DTM rookies, Marco Wittmann, also hit trouble as his BMW grounded to a halt outside the Mercedes Arena.
by Simon Evans