Australia overcame a terrible first-half performance to register their first win of the Rugby Championship as Argentina once again hit the wall and conceded late points in Canberra to ruin their early success.
Michael Cheika praised Australia's second-half performance as they scored 35 points to claim victory over Argentina in the Rugby Championship.
Cheika said he was surprised by South Africa's 57-0 loss to New Zealand in Saturday's other Rugby Championship test and warned of a backlash from the Springboks when the Wallabies play them in their next match in Bloemfontein on September 30.
"They didn't try to hide from the lack of intensity and urgency and they needed to pick it up and own it and they did that in the second half".
Cheika was at a loss to explain why his side were so insipid in the first half, after which they trailed 13-10, before catching fire in the second.
Also winless before the clash, Argentina got the better of the scrappy home side early as they as they dominated territory and possession.
Australia came out firing at the start of the second half and prop Kepu burrowed over the line from close range for a converted try to put them ahead 17-13 after 50 minutes.
A second-half revival saw five Wallaby tries as Sekope Kepu, Israel Folau, Will Genia, Nick Phipps and Jordan Uelese all crossed, giving Australia a 45-20 bonus-point win much to the delight of Cheika.
Folau, who had been in the news all week because of his public stance against gay marriage, rewrote history on the field by becoming the first Wallabies player to score four doubles in one Test season.
Skipper Michael Hooper said he felt the victory was more a reward than a relief.
"It's a good feeling for everyone and we've been putting in a lot of things in place to get a result that builds as the game goes on".
Australia travel to South Africa to take on the Springboks in Bloemfontein in their next encounter in a fortnight.