Yvan Muller topped World Touring Car Championship qualifying for the fifth consecutive event in the series’ Argentine bow in Termas de Rio Hondo.
The Frenchman was quickest on his first run in the decisive Q2 session, before lowering his time to a 1m47.920s on his second.
RML team-mate Tom Chilton moved up to second place, half a second down on Muller, despite taking something of a rallycross line through the final corner.
Norbert Michelisz put his Honda in third place, just ahead of factory driver Gabriele Tarquini. The Chevrolets of Pepe Oriola and Alex MacDowall will line up on row three for race one, with the similar Cruzes of James Nash and Michel Nykjaer on row four after seventh-placed qualifier Tiago Monteiro moves to the back for an engine change.
Local favourite Jose Maria Lopez qualified tenth for his WTCC debut, and will therefore start race two from pole in his Wiechers-Sport BMW. Hugo Valente and James Thompson were the remaining drivers through to Q2.
Amongst those dumped out in Q1 were Rob Huff (14th) and Tom Coronel (16th). Huff also had an engine change, so will join Monteiro at the back for race two.