While details on Black Panther haven't been bounteous by any means, the actor behind the mask, Chadwick Boseman, clarified a bit of T'Challa's role in Captain America: Civil War.
In a conversation with Empire, Boseman said that T'Challa is not a superhero, at least as we typically know them to be. He went on to say that he isn't on anyone's team, even though in the trailers and media from the film he is seen on Tony's side. Boseman added, "It's my political mission to tame it and get it under control".
That makes a lot of sense and is in line with how he has been approached in the books. T'Challa is a king, and he will do whatever it takes to keep his nation, Wakanda, safe. Part of that is putting out fires before they become infernos, and that seems to be what he is doing here.
He did go on to say that while his solo feature, due in 2018, is more a superhero type movie, it would still be character driven.