Renault CEO Thierry Bollore's future is in doubt amid strained relations with alliance partner Nissan, two French newspapers reported.
Renault Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard will ask the automaker's board to look for a successor to Bollore, Le Figaro said, citing unnamed sources.
Senard could bring the succession proposal onto the agenda of the next board meeting on Oct. 18, the paper said.
Bollore was a close ally of former Renault Chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn. He expressed support for Ghosn after his former boss was arrested in Japan for alleged financial crimes last November, angering Nissan.
Nissan has little confidence in Bollore and his relations with Senard are no more than cordial, Les Echos, another French newspaper, reported.
Some at Renault are questioning why Bollore, as a protege of Ghosn, remains at the helm of the automaker while other Ghosn confidants have left or been forced out, Les Echos said.
The newspaper said that as well as stabilizing Renault's alliance with Nissan, Senard also has a mandate to "clean house" at Renault, a step he has yet to take.
Bollore, 56, has long been viewed with suspicion by the French government as a holdover from the Ghosn years, people familiar with the situation told Bloomberg. The French state holds a 15 percent stake in Renault.
The main obstacle to replacing Bollore is the lack of an obvious successor, the people said.
A source familiar with the French government's thinking told Reuters: "It's sometimes good to change people who have been in a place for a long time."
Renault declined to comment. Bollore, who is scheduled to address employees in a Q&A session on Thursday, did not return requests for comment.
On Wednesday, the French economic minister, Bruno Le Maire, affirmed the government's trust in Senard and the automaker's board of directors to "make the best possible choices for the governance of Renault."
Le Maire said it was not up to the French state to interfere in management decisions at Renault.
Speaking on the sidelines of a European Union's finance ministers meeting, Bruno Le Maire said he had full confidence in Renault's chairman and board to choose the best governance and people to implement the company's strategy.
"We have full confidence in Jean-Dominique Senard and Renault's board to choose the best governance and people that will apply the industrial strategy that the state has defined for its technological transformation," Le Maire said.
Any change at the top of Renault would follow a management overhaul at Nissan, and could help to ease tensions between the alliance partners.
Nissan on Tuesday named Makoto Uchida as CEO. Uchida, until now the head of Nissan's China business, is known for his close ties to Renault, which has a 43.3 percent stake in Nissan.