Police in Christchurch have arrested and charged a 53-year-old man with the murder and sexual violation of Tracey Lee Morris.
The 46-year-old woman's body was found in a car in Grays Road near the airport on Friday.
The man will appear in the Christchurch District Court on Monday.
Police say a post-mortem examination of Ms Morris has been done and the injuries are consistent with a violent incident.
Detective Inspector Virginia Le Bas says Ms Morris's next-of-kin have been notified and Police Family Liaison officers and Victim Support are working with the family.
She says the investigation is continuing and the police would like to hear from anyone with information which might help establish the course of events leading to her death.
A forensic scene examination will continue over the next few days.