Police have arrested the owner of the car and his partner after the abandoned vehicle was discovered on Sunday morning with its hazard lights flashing.
The car, a Peugeot 607 with no registration plates, contained seven gas cylinders, one of which was empty.
No detonators were found inside the vehicle.
The car was parked on the Quai de Montebello in the fifth arrondissement of Paris, which is just a narrow stretch of water away from the Notre Dame Cathedral
The cathedral is one of Paris's most visited landmarks attracting 13 million visitors each year.
Photo: Google Maps
The car also contained a book with Arabic writing, reported Le Parisien newspaper.
Anti-terror police and the French General Directorate for Internal Security (DGSI) have launched an investigation.
France remains on high alert for terrorism after a series of attacks across the country since January last year, most recently after 86 people were killed in Nice when a truck driver deliberately drove into a crowd of Bastille Day revellers.
Isis said the truck was driven by one of its followers.
Less than two weeks later, two young jihadists murdered a priest near the northern city of Rouen.
Isis also claimed responsibility for the November 2015 attacks on Paris that killed 130 people and injured hundreds.
The head of France's DGSI domestic intelligence service, Patrick Calvar, warned in May of a "new form of attack" in which explosive devices would be left near sites that attract large crowds.