Fernando Alonso lasted just a solitary lap in the orange-and-black McLaren MCL32 before an oil leak in the Honda engine was discovered.
The Spaniard was all-set for the day ahead but the problems already started to appear once he completed his first installation lap.
A Honda spokeswoman said: "We have an oil systems issue which requires a full investigation.
"We plan to run again today, but due to the difficult access location it will take several hours to resolve."
Red Bull also suffered some early teething problems, with a sensor issue limiting Daniel Ricciardo to four laps of the Barcelona circuit.
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