Hamilton conserved his finest for last, enhancing by 8 tenths of a 2nd on his last flying lap to leave Ferrari and Red Bull tracking in his wake, over half a 2nd behind.
Kimi Raikkonen will line up along with Hamilton on the front row, with Ferrari colleague Sebastian Vettel 3rd and Max Verstappen 4th for Red Bull.
Hamilton’s Mercedes colleague Valtteri Bottas crashed out at the start of Q3, with the substantial damage to the vehicle possibly activating a grid charge.
A close battle in between Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull appeared like playing out for much of the session, prior to Hamilton raised the stakes in incredible style, leaving the others in his wake.
In the end Hamilton got pole by an enormous 0.664 seconds.
I am constantly pursuing excellence which was as close as I can get.
Vettel was beaten to 2nd by Raikkonen by simply 0.01 secs, with the Red Bulls of Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo 5th and 4th.
Four-time world champ Hamilton confesses his Albert Park lap was ‘near excellence’.
I am so pleased with that lap. I am constantly aiming for excellence and that was as close as I can get.”
In a tense interview later on, Vettel asked Hamilton why he had not had the ability to produce such a lap previously in certifying, with the Briton recommending he was biding his time and wished to “clean the smile off your face”.