For carbon fiber reinforced metal matrix composites, there are many potential problems such as severe agglomeration of carbon fibers (CFs), their poor interfacial wettability with the matrix, and poor mechanical strength. To solve these problems, we proposed to use electroless plating to coat a layer of Ni onto the CFs, and then studied their interfacial structures, fracture strain/strength and wettability. The coated Ni layer was uniformly distributed onto and well bonded with the CFs. The maximum strain of the CFs coated with the Ni layer was increased by 23.4%, though their average fracture strength was slightly decreased from 3.5 GPa to 2.25 GPa. The wettability of the Ni-coated fiber was significantly improved, verified from testing results using both a dip coating method and a fiber reinforced composite simulation test.