The single beep of a car horn led to a man being viciously assaulted on a service station forecourt by two men, a court has heard.

Lance Colin Moore and Thomas Turner-Kawe's behaviour was "completely over the top", Judge Michael Crosbie said before sentencing each of them to seven months' home detention.

The pair previously pleaded guilty in the Dunedin District Court to assault with intent to injure and wilful damage, and Moore also admitted counts of dangerous driving and theft.

He was behind the wheel on the afternoon of June 5 last year, heading north in Princes St with Turner-Kawe in the passenger seat.

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The victim was in the right-hand lane when the defendants' vehicle veered in front of him without indication. He sounded his horn in disapproval, setting in motion a wild chain of events.

Moore responded by braking sharply at least three times, causing the victim to do the same.

Eventually, the defendant pulled into the left lane to allow the man to pass but made gestures at him to pull over as he did so.

Moore swerved into the victim in a bid to force him off the road but the driver took evasive action.

As the man continued to a service station on Cumberland St, the defendants followed.

When the victim stopped on the forecourt, the attack began.

Turner-Kawe kicked the driver's door shut before walking round to the passenger side to ensure the other man in the car remained in his seat.

Moore, meanwhile, punched the victim in the face through an open window and kicked the door, causing damage to the panel.

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Not to be outdone, his co-defendant joined the assault.

The duo threw about 20 punches in total, the court heard, as the victim protected himself with his arms.

In a victim impact statement he said he did not require medical attention as he had deflected most of the blows.

Moore however inflicted the final insult.

He removed the keys from the ignition and threw them over a fence.

Crosbie said that he had viewed CCTV footage of the incident.

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"Frankly, I found it shocking and I've seen a lot of them," he said.

"This is more than road rage. This is meting out some sort of summary justice — because someone tooted their horn at you."

The court heard both Moore and Turner-Kawe had violent convictions in their past but they were some years ago.

The defendants were ordered to pay $446 reparation and Moore was banned from driving for a year.