Renault has appointed Nick Heidfeld as injured Robert Kubica's replacement for the start of the 2011 season.
"I would have liked to come back to Formula One in different circumstances, but I'm proud to have been given this chance," the 33-year-old German is quoted as saying in a media statement.
Heidfeld, with more than 170 grands prix under his belt, made his debut in the Lotus-sponsored R31 at Jerez last weekend.
"I have a good feeling for the car, which is quite innovative. I'm extremely motivated and can't wait for the season to begin," he added.
Team boss Eric Boullier said he was impressed with Heidfeld's performance at Jerez.
"We always said the priority was to have an experienced driver in the car and we feel he is the ideal man for the job," said the Frenchman.
Beginning on Saturday, Heidfeld will test for two full days in Barcelona