Delayed Wallerian degeneration after neuronal injury is a feature of the C57BL/Wld(s) mouse mutant. In the present study, we examined the effect of unilateral controlled cortical impact (CCI) on motor and cognitive performance in C57BL/6 and C57BL/Wld(s) mice. Performance on a beam-walking task was impaired in both injured groups over the first 3 weeks; however, between 28 and 35 days post injury, C57BL/6 mice continued to improve whereas C57BL/Wld(s) mice showed increased footfaults. In a spatial learning task, C57BL/Wld(s) animals performed consistently better than C57BL/6 mice when tested 7-10 days and 14-17 days following CCI. C57BL/Wld(s) mice also demonstrated improved working memory performance as compared with C57BL/6 mice when trained on days 21-22 after injury; this effect was lost on days 23 and 24, and was not evident in other animals tested in the same task at 28-31 days following injury. These results indicate a marked delay in motor and cognitive impairment following CCI in C57BL/Wld(s) mice compared with injured C57BL/6 controls. This is consistent with previous work showing delayed temporal evolution of neuronal degeneration in C57BL/Wld(s) mice and suggests CCI may be a suitable model for examining the functional consequences of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in genetically altered mice.