Police have named the driver killed in a car crash in Tirau yesterday afternoon.

She was Esther Grace-Lynn Cheval Bhana, 33, of Auckland.

Emergency crews were called to State Highway 1 - about 4km north of Tirau, near the golf course - just after 4pm.

Bhana was driving a southbound car.

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Police confirmed that vehicle crossed the centre line and hit a northbound vehicle - a ute.

Bhana died at the scene and two passengers from the same car suffered moderate injuries.

They were taken to Tokoroa Hospital for treatment.

The driver of the northbound vehicle was not injured.