Two SUVs had blocked the road so the 19-year-old "Boyfriend" singer could race a friend who was driving a rented red Ferrari, Miami Beach police spokeswoman Vivian Hernandez said.
Justin Bieber, who was driving 55 miles per hour in a 35-mile-per-hour zone, was also charged with resisting arrest without violence and driving with an expired Georgia driver's license, Hernandez said.
The star was "a little belligerent, using some choice words," when police arrested him, Miami Beach Police Chief Raymond Martinez told reporters, but grew cooperative once at the police station.
His friend, identified as a fellow singer named Khalil Sharieff, was arrested on a charge of driving under the influence, according to Hernandez.
She said Justin Bieber likely would be allowed to post bail later on Thursday after being transferred to a different jail.
The police department in the Florida city of Opa-locka said it was investigating the actions of officers who gave Justin Bieber and his entourage an unauthorized escort through traffic after they landed at a local airport earlier this week.
Justin Bieber's off-stage antics have at times overshadowed his music career in the last year as the Canadian star who shot to fame at age 15 transitions to adulthood.
Earlier this month, detectives in California raided Justin Bieber's home after he was accused of pelting a neighbor's house with eggs.