Sometimes a shortcut is not always the best road to take - as the owners of this car found out when they drove down a stairway and immediately got stuck.

Aucklander Bryce Taylor was walking back to work just after lunch, on Monday, when he came across the incident on Fanshawe St, in downtown Auckland.

"I heard this almighty crunch and saw the car sitting there. The back wheels were in the air.''

Mr Taylor said he thought the young couple in the car - a red Audi - may have mistaken the stairway for a ramp.

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"I think they were trying to use it as a shortcut.

"Afterwards, they just opened the doors and got out. They were looking at each other [not knowing what to do].''

Mr Taylor said the vehicle remained at the site for several hours before it was towed.