Iain Mackay, from Wick, suffered life-threatening injuries in the collision which left three other people seriously hurt.
He was travelling in a blue Peugeot 208 when it was involved in a collision with a blue Nissan Qashqai on the A99 at Occumster, Caithness, at around 4.45pm.
Police Scotland said he died at the Royal Hospital for Children in Glasgow, where he had been taken for treatment.
Sergeant David Miller said: “At this time, our thoughts are very much with Iain’s family following their unbearably tragic loss.
“Three women also sustained serious injuries as a result of this incident and we are appealing for anyone with information to please assist our inquiries, as we work to establish the full circumstances.
“If you were in the area and may have seen either of the cars involved, or have possible dashcam footage which could help our investigation, please get in touch with police.”
The 25-year-old woman driving the Peugeot and her female passenger, 26, were taken to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary with serious injuries.
The 44-year-old woman who was driving the Nissan was taken to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness, also with serious injuries.
Anyone with information on the crash can call police on 101, quoting incident number 2828 of August 22.
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