A 50-year-old male driver waiting at a red light was killed when a car ploughed into his car, shunting a queue of cars forward 20 metres.
The crash, involving four vehicles, happened in east Auckland on Monday evening.
Police confirmed the 50-year-old man died in the crash at the intersection of Botany Rd and Ti Rakau Drive in Golflands, just after 5pm.
A spokesman said his name would not be released until next of kin had been informed.
He said the investigation into the crash was ongoing, and no charges had been laid at this stage.
Another driver involved in the incident remained in hospital, he added.
At the scene, Inspector Cornelius Kluessien said a car had come "at full speed" towards a red light and crashed into the last car in a line of three stationary vehicles.
"It shunted all three of them forward. They ended up about 20 metres further forward than they originally were," he said.
The silver vehicle directly smashed into was left a mess of twisted metal.
Its driver – the sole occupant – died, Kluessien said.
The driver of the black car that collided was trapped initially and was freed by the fire service using the jaws of life, which removed the car's roof.
The driver was taken to Middlemore Hospital.
Kluessien said people in the first two cars, both SUVs, were "walking wounded but basically OK".
Auckland Transport said the intersection had been closed for a crash investigation and cordons were in place on Monday evening.
The Serious Crash Unit had examined the scene and photos had been taken by the police Eagle helicopter.