Police named the victim of the accident on the route between Dufftown and Huntly as retired farmer Patrick Pirie. Mr Pirie had been taken to Dr Gray’s Hospital in Elgin but died soon after from his injuries.
The accident happened at around 3.55pm on Saturday and involved Mr Pirie’s maroon Ford Fiesta, a white Renault Twingo and a blue Volkswagen Golf.
A 22-year-old man is being treated at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary as a result of the accident is described as being in a serious but stable condition, while a third man was treated at the scene of the accident suffering from minor injuries.
The road had been closed for several hours as police investigators tried to discover the cause of the accident.
Sergeant Rob Warnock from the Aberdeenshire and Moray Policing Unit said: “Sadly I can confirm that an 81-year-old male has died as a result of the collision and my thoughts are with his family and friends at this time.
“There was a steady flow of traffic on this road and I am appealing for any witnesses who may have seen the three vehicles involved in this collision at the time or prior to the collision to contact Police Scotland on 101.”