Police say the elderly woman who survived an attack at her home in Kawerau early on Saturday is holding up remarkably well.
The 71-year-old is in a stable condition in Whakatane Hospital with a fractured jaw and cheekbone.
Bay of Plenty District manager of criminal investigations Detective Inspector Tim Anderson says the woman opened her door to a man she thought was a relative arriving late from overseas.
He says the man demanded cash before attacking the woman and stealing her car, leaving her bloodied on the floor.
The car was found dumped in a bush area in Kawerau and will be forensically examined on Monday.
Mr Anderson says the woman is still shaken, but is coping well given the assault.
He says the serious assault was a cowardly and callous attack, and is urging any Kawerau residents with information to contact the police.