A single-vehicle rollover south of Los Banos resulted in one death around 5:50 a.m. Thursday.
An unidentified man driving a 2005 Chrysler P.T. Cruiser was traveling on Highway 165 just north of Cotton Road when for unknown reasons his vehicle veered off the left side of the roadway and overturned, according to CHP spokesman Jesse Lopez.
There were no witnesses but a nearby farmer heard the crash and called authorities.
Lopez said the CHP responded within four minutes but for unknown reasons the Chrysler caught fire and was fully engulfed.
Lopez said the CHP is investigating whether the car caught fire on impact or while it was traveling on Highway 165, possibly resulting in the accident.
The CHP is also investigating whether the driver died from the impact of the accident or because of the fire.
The Merced County Coroners had not yet identified the man.