Pirelli faces a searching examination of its credentials to continue to supply tyres to Formula One after Silverstone was left strewn with exploded rubber throughout the grand prix.
Rosberg ended up taking the chequered flag for the second time this year, primarily as Sebastian Vettel retired on lap 41 of the 52 with what appeared to be gearbox failure to his Red Bull.
But that followed a chaotic race in which there were four failures to the left-rear tyres of Lewis Hamilton, Felipe Massa, Jean-Eric Vergne and Sergio Perez.
Italian manufacturer Pirelli has come in for considerable criticism this season, and today's images will further damage their floundering reputation.
Pirelli are still to negotiate a new contract from next year as their initial three-season supply deal, that began in 2011 following the withdrawal from F1 of Bridgestone, expires at the end of this year.
The recent controversial test at Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya in the middle of last month, in conjunction with Mercedes, earned them a reprimand following an International Tribunal hearing.
The powers-that-be at Pirelli may be wondering whether it is worth their while continuing, in particular given the lack of support they have so far been given in terms of trying to develop new tyres for next year, given the significant change to the engine regulations.
Only yesterday, Pirelli motorsport director Paul Hembery was again asked questions as Sergio Perez's McLaren suffered a left-rear tyre failure.
Hembery explained there was a deep directional cut that caused the puncture, rather than a delamination, although could offer no reason as to how it had occurred.
Despite that, and heading into the race, there was no suggestion as to what was about to unfold in such dramatic circumstances.
Hamilton, from pole position, made a solid start and come the start of lap eight had eked out a two-second cushion over Vettel.
The 28-year-old, however, was the first to suffer as he headed down the Wellington Straight, his left-rear exploding and rapidly disintegrating.
Given Hamilton's position on the track at the time, a long way from home, it resulted in a slow journey back to the pits, with the time lost dropping him to the back of the pack.
Just three laps later, and after a stunning start as he had climbed seven places from 12th to fifth, Ferrari's Massa was the next to suffer.
Coming out of Aintree Corner on to the Wellington Straight, Massa was sent spinning off the track as his left-rear gave way
Like Hamilton, the Brazilian was also forced into a long journey back to the pits, relegating him to last.
Come lap 15 and an unwanted hat-trick for Pirelli was completed, and arguably the most dangerous as Vergne was travelling at a speed of around 160mph at the end of the Hangar Straight in his Toro Rosso when his left-rear blew.
It was at that point, with tyre carcasses strewn across the track, that race director Charlie Whiting was forced to deploy the safety car to help the marshals clear the circuit.
There were also several messages from the pit wall to drivers urging them to stay off the kerbs, particularly at turn four of Aintree Corner, suggesting that was the cause of the failures.
Once the safety car disappeared after seven laps, it then became a question of whether there would be any more incidents.
With Vettel, however, another victory appeared assured until the 25-year-old German suddenly slowed from a position of superiority 11 laps from home.
"Lost the drive, lost the gears" was Vettel's explanation after grinding to a halt at the start of the International Pits Straight.
With his car in an awkward position, it brought the safety car into play for a second time to allow it to be removed.
At that stage Rosberg inherited the lead, which he just managed to hang on to by 0.7secs to Red Bull's Mark Webber, who conjured a fine charge over the closing stages to take second just days after announcing he would be quitting the sport at the end of the season.
But that was not before Perez was again undermined by a blown tyre on lap 46, sending him out of the race.
Come the flag, and keeping up his title challenge and closing the gap to 21 points to Vettel, Ferrari's Fernando Alonso finished third, narrowly ahead of Hamilton, who missed out on a place on the podium by 0.6secs.
Lotus' Kimi Raikkonen, who had been running second at the second safety car, was fifth ahead of Massa.
Paul Di Resta finished ninth in his Force India, having started at the back of the grid after receiving a penalty yesterday for being underweight, while Jenson Button could only manage 13th for McLaren.
British Grand Prix Final Standings
1. Nico Rosberg (Mercedes) - 1:32:59.5
2. Mark Webber (Red Bull) - +0.7
3. Fernando Alonso (Ferrari) - +7.1
4. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) - +7.7
5. Kimi Raikkonen (Lotus) - +11.2
6. Felipe Massa (Ferrari) - +14.5
7. Adrian Sutil (Force India) - +16.3
8. Daniel Ricciardo (Toro Rosso) - +16.5
9. Paul di Resta (Force India) - +17.9
10. Nico Hulkenberg (Sauber) - +19.7
11. Pastor Maldonado (Williams) - +21.1
12. Valtteri Bottas (Williams) - +25
13. Jenson Button (McLaren) - +25.9
14. Esteban Gutierrez (Sauber) - +26.2
15. Charles Pic (Caterham) - +31.6
16. Jules Bianchi (Marussia) - +36
17. Max Chilton (Marussia) - +67.6
18. Giedo van der Garde (Caterham) - +67.7
Romain Grosjean (Lotus) - Retired on Lap 51
Sergio Perez (McLaren) - Retired on Lap 46
Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull) - Retired on Lap 41
Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso - Retired on Lap 35