A car following model has been developed with particular reference to weak discipline of lane-based driving. The theory is based on the discomfort caused by lateral friction between vehicles. The movement of the following vehicle was formulated as a function of the off-centre effects of its leader(s). This incorporation of lateral friction offers a potential breakthrough in the fields of car following theory and microscopic simulation of traffic flow. Using a stopping-distance car following approach, the simulation presented in the paper pointed out the effect of the travel path width on the speed of the following vehicle, and the reduced following distance with increased lateral separation between the leader and follower. It was also shown that a special case of the proposed model (i.e. when the maximum escape speed is zero) produced the same results as the base model did for the conventional car following case. The simulation behaved rationally giving credibility to the author's staggered car following theory. (c) 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.