Abstract An investigation of the ultimate tensile strength and fracture strain of a fiber-reinforced Ti-matrix composite has been conducted. Comparisons have been made between experimental measurements and predictions of two micromechanical models: one assumes that the fibers behave independently of the matrix, i.e. as in a dry fiber bundle, and the other assumes frictional coupling between the fibers and the matrix, characterized by a constant interfacial sliding stress. To conduct such comparisons, a number of constituent properties have been measured, including the fiber strength distribution, the thermal residual stress and the interfacial sliding stress. In addition, the effects of gauge length on the tensile properties of the composite have been studied. The comparisons indicate that the model prediction based on frictional coupling provide a good representation of the experimental results. In constrast, predictions based on the dry fiber bundle approach strongly underestimate both the ultimate strength and the fracture strain and predict a gaunge length dependence that is inconsistent with the experiments.