That left him starting from the third row of the reverse grid for Sunday's sprint race. Although initially overtaken by Rapax driver Stefano Coletti and Racing Engineering's Juliàn Leal, Nasr crucially kept himself out of the first lap accident sparked by Calado hitting the back of Leimer and taking out Leal and Sam Bird at turn 4 to emerge in third place.
That subsequently became second place when he and Coletti soon managed to pass polesitter Stéphane Richelmi, and Nasr held on to the position for the rest of the race to finally make it onto the podium.
"My aim was to stay close at the start but look after the tyres so I could attack at the end," said Nasr after the finish. "That's what I did but Stefano just had enough to keep the lead. It's a good result though and with two good races this weekend we take away strong points which is important for the championship."
"A case of mixed emotions for the team today," admitted Trevor Carlin as the team packed up and prepared to ship out of Sepang at the end of Sunday. "We're delighted with Felipe's performance to take our first podium of the season, but we know that Jolyon could have been fighting for the win.
"Both Felipe and Jolyon can go to Bahrain happy with the speed they've shown and the team should be proud that the hard work over the winter season is paying off," he added.
The second race weekend of the 2013 GP2 Series season will be at Sakhir International Circuit in Bahrain on April 19-21. Carlin go into Round 2 with 32pts in the team championship putting them in third place just three points behind Racing Engineering, with Rapax currently in the lead.
In the driver standings, Nasr is in third place with 24pts just one adrift of Fabio Leimer, while Stefano Coletti has a further 11pts on them thanks to his double podium finish in Malaysia.