The 20-time Grand Slam champion, 37, won 6-4 6-4 in one hour and 13 minutes.
“I am very pleased with my performance and I am excited,” said Federer, who is yet to drop a place in the tournament.
World number 4 Federer took control by breaking up Hurkacz, 22, at the fifth match of the match before doing so again at the 3rd match of the second group and rescue both break points on his serve.
Federer have not played Nadal since beating him at the Shanghai Masters final in October 2017.
“The fans really are more excited about us playing as I have always must be centered on my game,” added Federer.
“If I really do play with Rafa then it always brings extra energy into the arena and also for both of us”