The Blackcaps are closing in on a first innings lead in the second test against England, trailing by 74 runs with seven wickets in hand after day two at Edgbaston.
A 122-run partnership between Devon Conway (80) and Will Young (82) saw New Zealand reach the close of play at 229/3, on course to pass England's total on day three.
Resuming after day one with England at 258/7, the Blackcaps took the final three English wickets for 45 runs. Trent Boult finished as the pick of the New Zealand bowling attack, finishing with figures of 4/85.
Dan Lawrence finished as England's top scorer, unbeaten with 81 from 124 balls, hitting 13 fours.
But the Blackcaps' innings stumbled early, Tom Latham out lbw to Stuart Broad for six, bringing Conway and Young together.
Batting together for the first time in test cricket, Conway and Young ticked off the milestones as a pair, putting on a century stand in 200 balls.
Backing up from his debut double-century at Lord's, Conway passed 50 again - this time taking 85 balls with four boundaries.
At the other end, Young was much more circumspect, batting in place of captain Kane Williamson, out with an elbow injury.
Given a life with his score on just seven - dropped by England captain Joe Root at slip -Young passed 50 as well, his first in test cricket, from 132 balls with seven boundaries.
Conway's innings was ended on 80, caught by Zak Crawley off Broad's bowling at 137/2, bringing Ross Taylor to the crease.
Adding 92 with Young, Taylor was 46 not out at the close of play, gaining valuable time in the middle before the World Test Championship final against India next week.
There were some nervy moments for Taylor, having to start his innings against the swinging ball, and with England's James Anderson and Stuart Broad bowling with their tails up.
Taylor was given out lbw on 11, but was saved on review as the umpire review showed the ball to be missing the stumps.
Close to closing out a near-perfect day, Young fell to the final ball before stumps, caught by Ollie Pope at short leg off the part-time spin of Dan Lawrence, and out for a vital 82.
Taylor will be joined by Henry Nicholls when day three begins on Saturday night, with the Blackcaps looking to secure a first innings lead in their hunt to win the series 1-0.