Carlin's Robert Wickens set the pace in Friday's opening Formula Renault 3.5 collective test at the Nurburging. The Canadian was left with a 0.583sec advantage over Epic Racing's Albert Costa in second, after a red flag annulled the final eight minutes of the hour and 15-minute session.
Monaco winner Daniel Ricciardo was third for ISR, ahead of 2011 double pole-sitter Cesar Ramos. Fortec has Superleague racer Yelmer Buurman on hand as a driver coach for Ramos and teammate Alexander Rossi, as the Dutchman has several victories on the Eifel circuit to his name.
Oliver Webb claimed a promising fifth for Pons Racing, but the Briton maintained a realistic outlook for the weekend.
"I think without the red flag we would have been top 10, fifth is probably a little flattering," said Webb. "It is my first time here, and it's a great track. The tarmac is very smooth, a little like Monaco. So it doesn't give you the confidence through the steering wheel, you just have to trust the car.
"There are several corners leading into each other that can provide a false sense of security, I think that's why there were quite a few red flags this morning. Picking your braking point for Turn 1 is also tricky as it's blind, bumpy and downhill. Quite a few people were caught out, myself included."
Webb's new teammate Michael Herck was 17th on his return to the series. The Coloni GP2 driver is preparing for the Nurburgring round of the GP2 series.
"I haven't driven this car before," said Herck. "It is really different to GP2, which has more speed and power, but it is still the closest category to GP2. My target today is to drive a lot and understand the aero'. I am very happy as I have already done 20 laps.
"We have a camera on the car to help see where I need to improve. There is a good atmosphere in the team as they know I am here to work. The priority is not to crash or get injured because I have a GP2 race in Valencia next week, then it is to make some kilometers and after that, of course, I would like to be quick."
Frenchman Nathanael Berthon completed the top six for ISR, ahead of Rossi, who led the session a little after the half-hour mark. The American is placed third in the standings, 17 points behind leader Jean-Eric Vergne.
With a maximum of 50 points on offer this weekend, Rossi will be aiming to leave Germany in the lead of the drivers' standings in order to collect a prize Lotus Renault Formula 1 roadshow run at the forthcoming meeting at the Hungaroring.
Costa, Tech 1 Racing's Kevin Korjus and Ricciardo are outside bets to take the championship lead this weekend, although mathematically the top nine drivers in the standings could claim the prize.
Making his debut appearance in the category this year, Supernova GP2 racer Fairuz Fauzy ended the morning in 17th for Mofaz.