SYDNEY - Sydney man Mohd Shah Saemin was fatally bashed with a hammer and stabbed just metres from his home in front of a woman who tried bravely to stop the attack.

The 43-year-old Malaysian-born man's car is believed to have been involved in a minor collision with a black sedan early yesterday near his Leichhardt home in Sydney's inner west.

Police believe the ferocious attack that followed in Marion St may have been sparked by road rage.

"He had left the vehicle and from what we believe from witness statements, was chased across the road and he was further attacked outside his residence," acting Superintendent Shayne Woolbank told reporters at the scene yesterday.

Two men, who fled in the sedan, are wanted for the killing.

"There was a lady, a passerby, a very brave lady. She tried to intervene in the assault. She's at the moment assisting police with inquiries," Woolbank said.

She told Network Ten that the victim had asked her for help before his attackers kicked him into submission in the gutter. Police arrived and performed CPR, but Saemin died.

Having lived in Australia for several years, Saemin had become a citizen and worked for the past three years as a driver for the Malaysian consulate in Sydney.

Consul of Malaysia Dr Mohd Nasir Abu Hassan said Saemin had last worked on Saturday, chauffeuring Malaysian students who had arrived in Sydney to attend university.

"I couldn't accept how it has happened to him. It is so tragic."

The victim's body will be sent to his Malaysian home town as requested by his family. Hassan said Saemin lived alone and did not have family in Australia.

Asked if the man was the type of person to get involved in fights, Hassan said: "No. He is a very nice person. He doesn't talk too much. He was very, very composed and generally ... humble."

Saemin is not believed to have been robbed during the attack.