Two women involved in a fatal crash south of Whangarei this week were German nationals, police say.
The driver, in her mid-twenties, died in the crash near Oakleigh. Her passenger was in a stable condition in hospital.
The crash closed State Highway 1 south of Whangarei for five hours.
Police believed their vehicle crossed the centre line and hit a light truck which then hit an oncoming car, killing a man and woman in it.
Chief inspector Wayne Ewers said he understood the two German women had been in New Zealand for a few months, working in Auckland.
He said it was not known why their car veered right on a straight piece of road, but the police investigation could reveal whether it was driver error or a mechanical fault.