The fatality occurred east of Black Mountain Road just before 9:45 a.m., according to the California Highway Patrol.
Helicopter video showed the crumpled wrecks of a black 2-door Scion coup and a blue Range Rover on the right shoulder of the freeway. A body was visible in the Scion.
The Range Rover was driving eastbound on the freeway when if crossed over to the west bound lanes and hit the Scion head-on, a CHP sergeant told FOX 5. The man driving the Scion died on impact. The driver of the Range Rover was taken to a hospital, but his condition was not immediately known, the sergeant said.
A SigAlert was in effect for about 2 hours. Westbound traffic was diverted off the freeway at Black Mountain Road, but traffic was moving freely in the eastbound lanes.
The westbound traffic lanes were reopened at about 11;30 a.m.
The cause of the crash was under investigation.