Fabien Galthie will replace Jacques Brunel as France head coach after the Rugby World Cup.
French Rugby Federation president Bernard Laporte on Sunday announced that the former Les Bleus scrum-half will succeed Brunel following the tournament in Japan.
Brunel wanted Ireland boss Joe Schmidt to take the role, but French clubs voted against the appointment of a foreign coach.
It is reported that Galthie, who has coached Stade Francais, Montpellier and Toulon, will work under Brunel ahead of the World Cup.
"I've named Fabien Galthie as coach," Laporte told newspaper Le Berry Republicain.
He added on French radio: "My number one choice was Joe Schmidt, for one simple reason, he speaks French like you and I."
Brunel came under increasing pressure after another disappointing Six Nations campaign, winning only two of their five matches to finish fourth.
Galthie, 50, won 64 caps for France, the last of which came against England in 2003.