The aim of the study was to increase the toughness and strength of the Cr3C2 based cermets without compromising other mechanical properties by reinforcing Cr3C2-NiCr with yttria stabilized tetragonal zirconia particles (3Y-TZP). The TZPs were produced by a steric entrapment process. Cr3C2-NiCr (master) and 2 wt% 3Y-TZP reinforced Cr3C2-NiCr "73C2Z3" cermets were sintered and the sintering kinetics and resulting mechanical properties were determined. The master cermets were sintered to 97% of theoretical density at 1350 degrees C while 73C2Z3 cermets achieved a relative density of 98.5% even at 1300 degrees C. Elastic modulus, transverse rapture strength, hardness, and fracture toughness values were measured. For the master cermets, all mechanical properties showed an increasing trend by increasing the sintering temperature to 1350 degrees C. On the other hand, the mechanical properties of 73C2Z3 cermets reached maximum or near maximum values at 1300 degrees C. Moreover, 73C2Z3 cermets had higher strength and fracture toughness compared to that of the master cermets and this observation was attributed to smaller carbide grains, a homogeneous 3-D network structure of Ni-Cr metal binder phase and a good distribution of fine 3Y-TZP5. (c) 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.