The Wallabies' growing pains continued under new coach Ewen McKenzie with a 27-16 loss in Wellington on Saturday ensuring the Bledisloe Cup stays across the Tasman for an 11th straight year.
The All Blacks again punished every mistake the Wallabies made and the Australians gave them plenty, while failing for a second week in a row to make anything stick in attack.
A brilliant intercept and 70-metre sprint from winger Israel Folau produced the Wallabies' only try in the 80-minute lesson from the clinical All Blacks.
Three penalties and a conversion from centre Christian Lealiifano were the only other points, while All Blacks winger Ben Smith produced two first-half tries for New Zealand.
The scoreline should have been harsher, with debutant five-eighth Tom Taylor missing three shots at goal in the first half.
For about 20 minutes Australian fans might have let themselves hope. There was urgency in attack and aggression in defence, with gold jerseys running hard at the All Blacks' line.
But one-on-one missed tackles cost the Wallabies in the first half before an absence of polish meant Australia threatened, but only threatened, in attack in the second half.
The Wallabies had the first points-scoring opportunity in the eighth minute, after 14 phases in attack. Lealiifano slotted the penalty to put Australia out to a 3-0 lead as light rain started.
It was the beginning of a more assured performance from the Australians, notwithstanding Will Genia's charged down kick in the first minute which put the Wallabies under immense pressure early on.
Their defence was still shaky but they appeared to have learnt to scramble following the humiliation of last week's 47-29 loss. Two certain All Blacks tries were saved in the space of four minutes thanks to Folau's tackle on Julian Savea and Michael Hooper's jump to disrupt their rivals' momentum moments later.
Lealiifano missed his next shot at goal, his first miss in his four-Test career, but regathered to make a break and get within metres of the try line moments later. He then slotted the next penalty, putting the Wallabies in front 6-0.
But All Blacks No. 8 Kieran Read would prove a pest all night. His retention of a high ball set up Smith's fourth try of the series in the 28th minute.
Debutant Tom Taylor converted to put the All Blacks on the score board and in the lead 7-6.
Ben Mowen was penalised for holding back a defender and the whistle was blown on Hooper minutes later. Taylor added another three points to make it 10-6 but let the next opportunity go with one minute left in the half.
All Blacks blindside Steve Luatua made a startling break to set up Smith's' second try right on half-time and the Wallabies ran in trailing by seven points, their promising start blown away on the breeze off Wellington's windy port.
They started well after the interval, with a break from winger James O'Connor getting them to within five metres of the try line.
The All Blacks were far superior from set pieces, launching countless attacking plays off their lineout and, in the second half, off their scrum.
Taylor slotted the first penalty attempt of the half to extend NZ's lead to 18-6. The Wallabies continued to threaten in attack - a break down the short side from Mowen and a run from Folau went close - but never anything more. Lealiifano narrowed the gap to seven points before five-eighth Matt Toomua was replaced by Quade Cooper.
Taylor stretched their lead to 24-9 with two successive penalty goals before Folau caught an intercept and sprinted 70 metres to salvage some hope. Lealiifano slotted the conversion to close the gap to eight points with seven minutes to go.
But the All Blacks like nothing better than responding to a threat, going on the attack and taking a penalty for their troubles.
McKenzie has a bye week to contemplate changes. He gave this team a second chance and for a second time it could not produce.