Sebastien Buemi claims his second pole of the season, as Jean-Eric Vergne and Andre Lotterer were relegated to the back of the field after using more than 200kW of power in their flying laps.
Vergne who was set to qualify within the top five had his lap times deleted along with his team-mate Lotterer which means the two Techeetah drivers will start from 18th and 19th place on the grid.
The only consolation for Vergne is that Bird will only start from 14th. With the Virgin Racing driver starting outside the points, the Frenchman’s 23 point championship lead is not under immediate threat at the start of the race.
The software glitch also has repercussions for the teams’ championship as with both Techeetah’s starting from the back, both Audi and DS Virgin Racing can catch some vital points in the race.
The championship protagonists started the qualifying in group one which saw Lucas Di Grassi hold the group up at the final corner which caused Buemi and Vergne to cross the line with a second to spare.
Despite the close call with the chequered flag, Vergne ended the session fastest, with Sam Bird in fourth which was later converted into 14th place.
Vergne and Lotterer were both set for Super Pole, but with them demoted that allowed Jerome D’Ambrosio and Nicolas Prost to take part in Super Pole along with Daniel Abt, Sebastien Buemi, and Mitch Evans.
Buemi set a blistering lap to take pole with a 1:13:991, which Evans was unable to beat and will start the race from second place.
Nicolas Prost will start from third after his super pole lap alongside Jerome D’Ambrosio in fourth.
Abt made an error on his lap at Turn 7 and will start the race from fifth place.
Nelson Piquet Jr was knocked out of Super Pole by Prost and will start the race from sixth place. Jose Maria Lopez will start from seventh place and Maro Engel in eighth.
Tom Dillman who replaces Edoardo Mortara in the Venturi will start from ninth on the grid alongside Nick Heidfeld in tenth place.
Oliver Turvey failed to qualify after fracturing his wrist in practice 2 and is unlikely to race in Saturday’s or Sunday’s race.