Khawaja reached his first Test century just before the close of Day 1.
The outspoken Warner, who vowed an aggressive Australian approach to the three-Test series, lived up to his feisty words with his second-highest Test score against an underwhelming Kiwi bowling attack at the Gabba.
With Warner plundering 163 runs off 224 balls, the Australians pounded the ragged Black Caps to go to stumps at 389 for two and a record first day Test score.
Khawaja also cashed in reaching his first Test century just before the close and was unbeaten on 102 with skipper Steve Smith not out on 41.
Along the way Smith raised 1,000 Test runs in the calendar year. Warner was finally out to one of his few false strokes of the day, but it took a marvellous one-handed catch above Ross Taylors head at slip to snare his prized wicket off James Neesham.
The irrepressible left-hander smashed 22 fours and one six for his second-highest Test score behind his 180 against India in Perth almost three years ago.