The 23-year-old Frenchman, who was the runner-up in last year's Atlantic series, is trying to secure a $2 million prize fund after champion Raphael Matos elected to forego it and switch to the Indy Pro Championship.
Perera though, was so impressive this week in testing at Sebring - going quickest on the last day in fact - that Conquest snapped him up on the spot anyway.
"This is a great opportunity for me and I would like to thank Conquest for believing in my ability," Perera said.
Season 2008
Perera ends Sebring test on top
05/02/2008 AT 16:14
"We had our eye on part of the $2 million but I'm thrilled we were able to reach a deal even without it. I can't wait to get back behind the wheel in the upcoming test at Laguna Seca."
Conquest's testing performances show a huge improvement from this time last season. Kiwi driver Matt Halliday was only confirmed a few days before the start of the season, and was painfully slow until he was dropped.
Team boss Eric Bachelart though, is a much happier man 12 months on and hopes to partner Perera with Simon Pagenaud.
He said: "I think Franck will surprise many people this year. He was the best driver in Atlantics last season and is a great addition to our team."
Perera came to prominence in 2003 by claiming the Italian Formula Renault title. Consistent podium finishes over two seasons of Formula Three Euroseries racing saw him test a Formula One car for Toyota and race in GP2 in 2006.
A poor year though saw him dumped from Toyota's young driver programme and forced a switch to the USA and ChampCar Atlantic, in which he won three times last season and finished second overall.
Season 2008
Power and Servia in IRL move
13/03/2008 AT 03:00
Season 2008
Forsythe to close doors
29/02/2008 AT 19:17