Li announced herself on the world stage by reaching the finals of the tournament last year and she took just 40 minutes to win her match on the Hisense Arena.
The Chinese fifth seed, who went on to win the French Open after last year's final defeat to Kim Clijsters in Melbourne, took advantage of Pervak's poor first serve percentage (57%) throughout the contest to triumph.
Both players struggled to cope with the sweltering conditions - splitting 48 unforced errors between them - with Li admitting after the match that she found it 'hard to breathe' at times.
She said: "I was feeling end of the first set really heat on the court. Also I was feeling no air. I couldn't breathe. Like I was feeling like, What's going on?"
"So, yeah, but so lucky I win so easy in the second set. So, yeah."
Li added that she hopes to go one better in this year's Australian Open by winning the title.
If Li is to repeat last year's heroics, she will have to do it the hard way. She has been drawn in the same quarter with Clijsters and the No. 1-ranked player Caroline Wozniacki.