Title hopeful again beats championship leader Hamilton by two tenths of a second as track temperatures hit 57 degrees.
Nico Rosberg continued at the top of the timesheets in Interlagos, beating team-mate Lewis Hamilton to top spot by the same two tenths of a second margin he had enjoyed in the morning session.
Rosberg spent the early part of the session trailing Hamilton on the prime medium tyres but when the switch was made for option soft tyres, the German stretched his legs to take P1 with his first flying lap.
Hamilton tried to respond but on his opening flyer he ran wide Mergulho corner and ended up six-tenths adrift of his title rival. Unlike many other drivers Hamilton managed to improve on his second quick lap but he could get no closer to Rosberg than 0.2s.
Kimi Raikkonen was third fastest, half a second behind Rosberg, while Daniel Ricciardo, who had finished tenth in the morning session, improved to fourth fastest in the afternoon session, with the RB10 looking much more surefooted in the second practice period. Behind Ricciardo came the Williams cars of Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa.
While Raikkonen enjoyed a decent afternoon, despite a spin, team-mate Fernando Alonso had a more troubled outing, the Spaniard being forced to pull over at the side of the track with an engine fire. Ferrari later said that the power unit involved was a high mileage example and the incident was of no major concern, though Director odf Engineering Pat Fry said it had been a shame that Alonso was sidelined for the final 20 minutes of the session. Despite the setback Alonso still managed the afternoon’s seventh fastest time.
Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat was ended up up eighth ahead of the second Red Bull of Sebastian Vettel, who, like his team-mate appeared more comfortable at the wheel of his RB10 than in the morning.
Kevin Magnussen rounded out the top 10, beating the lead Lotus of Pastor Maldonado by just two hundredths of a second.
Elsewhere, Esteban Gutierrez, who suffered electrical problems in the morning, also encountered problems in second session, the Mexican stopping with 13 minutes remaining and bringing out the red flag.
Jean-Eric Vergne also hit trouble. The Frenchman missed the morning session due to Max Verstappen taking over his Toro Rosso and Vergne’s first taste of the new Interlagos surface lasted just five laps before he pulled over at the aside of the track with a power unit problem.
Just 17 drivers ran during the session, with Sergio Perez unable to participate after Force India reserve Daniel Juncadella crashed his race car during the morning session.
2014 Brazilian Grand Prix – Free Practice 21 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:12.123 362 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:12.336 0.213 363 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 1:12.696 0.573 324 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing 1:12.956 0.833 245 Valtteri Bottas Williams 1:13.035 0.912 316 Felipe Massa Williams 1:13.099 0.976 277 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:13.122 0.999 208 Daniil Kvyat Toro Rosso 1:13.254 1.131 359 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing 1:13.333 1.210 2810 Kevin Magnussen McLaren 1:13.479 1.356 3311 Pastor Maldonado Lotus 1:13.497 1.374 3312 Romain Grosjean Lotus 1:13.714 1.591 3713 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 1:13.882 1.759 3214 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber 1:13.902 1.779 2515 Adrian Sutil Sauber 1:14.204 2.081 3616 Jenson Button McLaren 1:14.209 2.08617 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso 1:17.171 5.048 3118 Sergio Perez Force India No time 5