New Zealand's Aaron Cruden (left) is tackled by Italy's Alessandro Zanni.

Rome – World champions New Zealand moved through the gears after a sluggish start to beat Italy 42-10 on Saturday.

Leading 13-7 at halftime, the All Blacks had to wait until the 49th minute before they registered a second try when Ma'a Nonu crashed over from close range before Cory Jane's score and a late Julian Savea double.

Aaron Cruden kicked 17 points for an All Blacks side that made 14 changes after beating Scotland 51-22 last week and the hosts seized their opportunity by starting brightly.

Cruden got the visitors underway after 12 minutes with a penalty before captain Kieran Read scored under the posts four minutes later for the game's first try only for Alberto Sgarbi to hit back after 27 minutes.

Luciano Orquera added a conversion and a second-half drop goal for Italy. – Reuters