The effect of substrate pre-treatment on Cold Spray coating adhesion was studied. Fine aluminum powder (17-35 μm) was cold-sprayed onto AISI 2017 aluminum-based alloy with different preparations. In addition to as-received substrates, a first series of substrates were prepared by conventional methods: i.e. polishing and grit-blasting. Others were pretreated using a nano-pulsed Nd-YAG laser in the PROTAL® surface cleaning process. In the PROTAL® device the laser head is coupled with the cold spray gun to result in laser irradiation passing just prior to cold spray deposition. To elucidate main interaction mechanisms, coating-substrate interfaces were studied with Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM) and Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM) of thin foils which were prepared using Focused Ion Beam. These mechanisms are discussed in the light of results from LAser Shock Adhesion Test (LASAT) of cold-sprayed coatings. Coating-substrate interface was significantly improved when nano-pulsed laser was applied for substrates pre-treatment, resulting in the formation of high adhesion coatings.