Knowing a point would likely be enough to win the title on goal difference and that defeat could spell disaster, Manuel Pellegrini's men set out to attack from the first whistle and was duly rewarded.
Samir Nasri opened the scoring with a fine low strike that evaded Hammers keeper Adrian and crashed in off the post, and Vincent Kompany made it 2-0 shortly after the break.
City dominated the opening half an hour, pegging its opponent back into its own penalty area for long periods, but could not find a way through until the 38th minute.
Martin Skrtel's own goal at Anfield put the home fans' nerves at ease somewhat but they would still have been hoping that David Silva, Edin Dzeko and Sergio Aguero had done better with their half chances.
But Nasri's measured strike sent the Etihad into raptures and, with Liverpool still trailing 1-0 to Newcastle, seemed to dash any lingering hopes at Anfield.
City did not rest of its laurels following the opener, with Aguero glancing Nasri's free kick wide of the far post and then Pablo Zabaleta failing to convert his compatriot's low cross.
Silva then struck the crossbar seconds before the halftime whistle when Andy Carroll deflected his powerful shot.
And City took one more giant stride toward the league crown in the 49th minute when Vincent Kompany poked home from close range after Nasri's corner struck Dzeko near the penalty spot.
In a matter of moments Liverpool turned its match on its head, with Daniel Agger and Daniel Sturridge both scoring off Steven Gerrard free kicks, but City carried on.
Painted as a potential saviour for Liverpool before the match, Andy Carroll made way for Carlton Cole having failed to make an impact for the Hammers.
Pellegrini looked to shore things up by bringing on Fernandinho and James Milner for Edin Dzeko and David Silva, but City kept up the pressure and Nasri was denied by Adrian after being played in by Yaya Toure.
Toure was withdrawn late with a hamstring injury while Aguero and Hammers midfielder Mark Noble were both booked for a late spat, but that did not dampen the hosts' celebrations.
The home fans whipped up a noisy atmosphere before flooding onto the pitch at the final whistle, which confirmed a second Premier League title in three years and City's second trophy of the season following its Capital One Cup final victory.
- Sports & Recreation
- Samir Nasri
- Vincent Kompany
- Premier League
- Sergio Aguero
- Manuel Pellegrini
- David Silva
- Edin Dzeko