The number-six seed was outplayed by the Argentinean, who saved five break points on his way to a two-hour win.
Ferrero, the former world number one, has won just a solitary match this season.
Elsewhere, number eight seed Albert Ramos got the better of Colombia`s Santiago Giraldo, beating him 6-3 6-4, taking both of the break opportunities that were presented to him.
Also through is David Nalbandian.
The big-serving South American eased past Benoit Paire 7-6 (7/3) 6-3, while Potito Starace scraped past qualified Paul Capdeville 5-7 7-6 (9/7) 6-2.
There was also a win for Jeremy Chardy who saw off Blaz Kavcic.
In the second round, Thomaz Bellucci won an all-Brazil affair, seeing off Ricardo Mello 6-0 1-6 6-3.