Aston Martin went out early, eager to avenge their Friday practice woes, and get over their recent slump in form.
Ferrari were the first to be aggressive, conducting early soft tyre runs which left them 1-2 just ten minutes into the session with Yuki Tsunoda in third.
Not long after, the two Mercedes - who always show strongly in Mexico, usurped the Ferraris as George Russell sat atop the timesheets by half a second.
Red Bull tried to spoil everyone’s party as they have so often this season, but Verstappen failed to crack Russell’s lap with his first attempt, despite setting his time on a slightly more rubbered in track.
Eventually the Dutchman found his way past and into first place, with Perez lifting himself up the order to leave Red Bull handily placed in first and third halfway through the session.
Daniel Ricciardo pushed his AlphaTauri into fourth place on the medium tyres on an alternative run plan, as he continues to push for a Red Bull drive next season, but only found three extra tenths during his soft tyre run.
Williams continued to show promising pace as both Alex Albon and Logan Sargeant found themselves in the top ten on differing strategies, before a searing last run propelled Albon to second.
McLaren were in search of pace, with both drivers showing signs of struggles throughout the session but did manage to recover late on.
In the final runs, Williams continued to surprise as Alex Albon lead the chasing pack by nearly half a second, indicating that they may have the pace to make Q3 with both cars this weekend.
Even Mercedes’ attempts to beat Albon were futile, sitting at least three tenths behind with both cars after their second soft tyre runs.
Despite struggling with tyre temperatures, Max Verstappen fought to return back to the top of the times with ten minutes to go, albeit a tenth ahead of the Williams.
Home favourite Sergio Perez looked good to go second but ended up third after falling away in the third sector of his lap.
Ferrari left it late and ended up in traffic, with Sainz even taking a spin while stuck behind Lance Stroll in the fast, flowing sector two, ending the session with their cars 13th and 15th respectively.
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