Rosberg posted a blistering lap time of 1:35.121, which secured his maiden F1 pole position.
The second fastest time, a 1:35.262, was posted by McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton, though the young Brit will be starting five places back tomorrow after incurring a penalty for changing his gearbox.
This sees the third fastest of the day, Michael Schumacher, move up to second on the grid. He posted a fastest time of 1:35.691, which means there will be an all-Mercedes front row in an F1 race for the first time since the 1955 Italian Grand Prix.
Fourth fastest during qualifying was Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi, followed by Lotus’ Kimi Räikkönen at fifth fastest and McLaren’s other driver, Jenson Button, at sixth fastest on the day. Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso could only manage the ninth fastest time of the day, while reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel was 11th fastest. His Red Bull Racing teammate Mark Webber managed to post the seventh fastest time of the day.
Track conditions were good this morning at the Shanghai International Circuit, though ambient temperatures varied somewhat, dropping from 77 to 71 degrees F (25 to 22 degrees C) during the session.
Going into tomorrow’s race, Alonso leads the points table with his tally of 35 points, followed by Hamilton on 30 and Button on 25 points. McLaren leads the Constructors' standings with 55, while Red Bull Racing owns 42 points, Ferrari has 35, Sauber own 30 points and Lotus is the final team in double digits, lying fifth with 16 points.
Below are the full results from qualifying today, and remember to come back for our weather forecast later today and full race results on Monday.
1) Nico Rosberg - Mercedes 1:35.121
2) Lewis Hamilton - McLaren 1:35.626
3) Michael Schumacher - Mercedes 1:35.691
4) Kamui Kobayashi - Sauber 1:35.784
5) Kimi Räikkönen - Lotus 1:35.898
6) Jenson Button - McLaren 1:35.942
7) Mark Webber - Red Bull Racing 1:35.700
8) Sergio Perez - Sauber 1.35.831
9) Fernando Alonso - Ferrari 1:35.982
10) Romain Grosjean - Lotus 1:35.983
12) Sebastian Vettel - Red Bull Racing 1:36.031
13) Felipe Massa - Ferrari 1:36.255
14) Pastor Maldonado - Williams 1:36.283
15) Bruno Senna - Williams 1:36.289
16) Paul di Resta - Force India 1:36.317
17) Nico Hulkenberg - Force India 1:36.745
18) Daniel Ricciardo - STR 1:37.714
19) Jean-Eric Vergne - STR 1:37.714
19) Heikki Kovalainen - Caterham 1:38.463
20 ) Vitaly Petrov - Caterham 1:38.677
21) Timo Glock - Marussia 1:39.282
22) Charles Pic - Marussia 1:39.717
23) Pedro de la Rosa - HRT 1:40.411
24) Narain Karthikeyan - HRT 1:41.000