The Steer-by-Wire (SbW) system is an electronically controlled steering system that is able to improve steering capability without mechanical links between the steering wheel and the front wheels. However, failure of the SbW system actuator may lead to steering performance degradation and result in instability. In this paper, a fault tolerant sliding mode predictive control (SMPC) strategy for an SbW system is proposed. The sliding mode control is applied to improve the robustness of the model predictive control (MPC) in the presence of modeling uncertainties and disturbances, while the MPC is applied to enhance the fault tolerant capability of the steering control processes. The chaos particle swarm optimization (CPSO) algorithm is introduced to optimize the MPC and a two-stage Kalman filter is introduced to simultaneously provide fault information and state estimation. The performance of the proposed approach is validated through computer simulation. The results demonstrate that the proposed SMPC-CPSO controller is more robust and provides better tracking performance in the presence of model uncertainties, disturbance, and actuator faults than SCMP-PSOs (heterogeneous comprehensive learning particle swarm optimization, evolutionary particle swarm optimizer, etc), SMPC-differential evolution, MPC, SMPC, and MPC-PSO.