Police have named the man who died yesterday after his car veered off a road near Napier and smashed into a tree.

He was John William Baker, 64, of Hastings.

The crash was on State Highway 2 between Napier and Awatoto about 11.40am, police said.

Mr Baker was the sole occupant of the car, which left a straight stretch of road and crashed into a tree, crumpling its bonnet up to the windscreen.

He was cut from the car and taken to Hawke's Bay Hospital, where he died.

The cause of the crash was unknown, but police have ruled out speed and alcohol as factors.