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[en] New heavy neutral gauge bosons Z' are predicted by many models of physics beyond the Standard Model. It is quite possible that Z's are heavy enough to lie beyond the discovery reach of the CERN Large Hadron Collider LHC, in which case only indirect signatures of Z' exchanges may emerge at future colliders, through deviations of the measured cross sections from the Standard Model predictions. We discuss in this context the foreseeable sensitivity to Z's of W±-pair production cross sections at the e+e- International Linear Collider (ILC), especially as regards the potential of distinguishing observable effects of the Z' from analogous ones due to competitor models with anomalous trilinear gauge couplings (AGC) that can lead to the same or similar new physics experimental signatures at the ILC. The sensitivity of the ILC for probing the Z-Z' mixing and its capability to distinguish these two new physics scenarios is substantially enhanced when the polarization of the initial beams and the produced W± bosons are considered. A model independent analysis of the Z' effects in the process e+e- → W+W- allows to differentiate the full class of vector Z' models from those with anomalous trilinear gauge couplings, with one notable exception: the sequential SM (SSM)-like models can in this process not be distinguished from anomalous gauge couplings. Results of model dependent analysis of a specific Z' are expressed in terms of discovery and identification reaches on the Z-Z' mixing angle and the Z' mass.