Shaun Johnson scored twice and also managed eight conversions as the Kiwis ran out easy winners in Avignon.
It was Johnson’s half-back partner Kieran Foran who got the defending champions going, with a well-placed crossfield kick that centre Krisnan Inu took well to score.
The crossfield kick was again effective for the Kiwis’ second try, this time Bryson Goodwin the player to outjump the French defence and score.
With ‘Les Bleus’ offering little for the hopeful 17,000 crowd to shout about, New Zealand then scored another first-half try, this time through the sheer size of prop Frank-Paul Nu’uausala.
As the second-half got underway the scoreline remained 18-0 until the Kiwis stepped up the tempo with three tries in fifteen minutes.
Johnson got his brace in quick succession, before Greg Eastwood‘s hard carrying was rewarded with a try next to the posts.
With five minutes remaining Nu’uausala claimed his second try of the match, and then in the final play Roger Tuivasa Sheck, who had a try harshly ruled out in first half, went over in the corner.
Johnson rounded off the action with a 100% kicking record and was deservedly voted Man of the Match.
New Zealand: 1. Kevin Locke, 2. Jason Nightingale, 3. Bryson Goodwin, 4. Krisnan Inu, 5. Roger Tuivasa-Sheck, 6. Kieran Foran, 7. Shaun Johnson, 8. Ben Matulino, 9. Issac Luke, 10. Jared Waerea-Hargreaves, 11. Frank Pritchard, 12. Alex Glenn, 13. Simon Mannering. Interchanges: 14. Elijah Taylor, 15. Sam Kasiano 16. Frank-Paul Nuuausala, 17. Greg Eastwood.
France: 1. Morgan Escare, 2. Frederic Vaccari, 3. Jean Philippe Baile, 4. Vincent Duport, 5. Cyril Stacul, 6. Thomas Bosc, 7. Theo Fages, 8. Olivier Elima, 9. Kane Bentley, 10. Remi Casty, 11. Kevin Larroyer, 12. Sebastian Raguin, 13. Andrew Bentley. Interchanges: 14. Gregory Mounis, 15. Jamal Fakir, 16. Benjamin Garcia, 17. Mickael Simon.
Venue: Parc des Sports