The aim of the present work is to investigate the microstructure of Al-Pb monotectic surface layers generated by a laser surface alloying technique on the surface of an Al-4Cu-1.5Si-0.5Mg alloy. Monotectic alloys are generally used as materials for sliding bearings. Layers of a monotectic alloy generated by laser surface alloying have a potential for superior properties, because the rapid solidification during this process results in fine precipitation structures which can act as solid lubricant. The structure of the Al-Pb monotectic surface layers was observed in the light microscope and the scanning electron microscope. Volume fraction and size distribution of lead particles were determined by quantitative image analysis. Pin-on-disc experiments were carried out to characterize and compare the tribological properties of the Al-Pb monotecitc layers and cast Al-Cu-Si-Mg alloys.