Abstract The carbon fabric composites filled with the particulates of nano-Al 2O 3 and nano-Si 3N 4, respectively, were prepared by dip-coating of the carbon fabric in a phenolic resin containing the particulates to be incorporated and successive curing. The friction and wear behaviors of the resulting carbon fabric composites sliding against AISI-1045 steel in a pin-on-disk configuration were evaluated on a Xuanwu-III high temperature friction and wear tester. The morphologies of the worn surfaces of the filled carbon fabric composites and the counterpart steel pins were analyzed by means of scanning electron microscopy. The effect of the fillers on the adhesion strength of the resin adhesive was evaluated using a DY35 universal materials tester. It was found that nano-Al 2O 3 and nano-Si 3N 4 as the fillers contributed to improve the friction-reducing and anti-wear abilities of the carbon fabric composites. This was attributed to the interfacial reinforcing action of the nano-particulates as the fillers. Namely, after being cured at 180 °C for 2 h, the carbon fabric composites filled with nano-particles had significantly increased interfacial bonding strengths among the carbon fabric and the resin adhesive, which helped to largely enhance the mechanical strength of the composites. Moreover, the nano-particles-filled carbon fabric composites were able to form transferred films of better uniformity and compactness on the counterpart steel surface, which also partly accounted for their better friction-reducing and antiwear abilities than the unfilled carbon fabric composite.