Audi's Edoardo Mortara has remained the class of the DTM field at Budapest but was made to work for his race two pole ahead of Mattias Ekstrom and Marco Wittmann.
The Team Abt Sportsline driver faced the prospect of starting behind championship leader Wittmann after only setting the sixth fastest time following the first set of runs.
In a renewed attack from BMW, Wittmann went as far as briefly taking provisional pole as the session entered its dying seconds.
However, the Team RMG prepared BMW M4 was soon bumped off the top spot, firstly by Mattias Ekstrom - to the tune of just 0.001s - before Mortara trumped the pair after producing the weekends first sub 1 minute 35 lap.
Much to Mortara's relief, Ekstrom will split the two championship protagonists in second as the pole-sitter seeks to further erode Wittmann's 14 point lead.
Jamie Green and Miguel Molina also threatened for pole position but the Audi wound up around 0.2s slower than their Audi stablemates in fourth and fifth.
Team RBM's Maxime Martin was the next best placed BMW M4 in sixth position ahead of his RBM team mate Tom Blomqvist in seventh.
HWA's Robert Wickens was the only Mercedes runner to make the top-ten order in eighth while Nico Muller and Adrien Tambay followed closely behind in ninth and tenth.