Summary In this paper we derive a new dynamic friction force model for the longitudinal road/tire interaction for wheeled ground vehicles. The model is based on a dynamic friction model developed previously for contact-point friction problems, called the LuGre model. By assuming a contact patch between the tire and the ground we develop a partial differential equation for the distribution of the friction force along the patch. An ordinary differential equation (the lumped model) for the friction force is developed, based on the patch boundary conditions and the normal force distribution along the contact patch. This lumped model is derived to approximate closely the distributed friction model. Contrary to common static friction/slip maps, it is shown that this new dynamic friction model is able to capture accurately the transient behaviour of the friction force observed during transitions between braking and acceleration. A velocity-dependent, steady-state expression of the friction force versus the slip coefficient is also developed that allows easy tuning of the model parameters by comparison with steady-state experimental data. Experimental results validate the accuracy of the new tire friction model in predicting the friction force during transient vehicle motion. It is expected that this new model will be very helpful for tire friction modeling as well as for anti-lock braking (ABS) and traction control design.