What is the Dealer Holdback?

What is the Dealer Holdback?

Dealer Holdback is considered as the percentage of the price of a new car 2-3% of MSRP which is returned to the dealer from the manufacturer after the car is sold. The holdback is the percentage of either the MSRP or invoice price of a new vehicle that the manufacturer repays to the dealer.


Dealer Holdback can range from zero to 3 percent of the total vehicle invoice. Holdback is the refund of money to the dealer for what they’ve paid originally to buy the car from the manufacturer. 


Holdback is created by the manufacturers to help reduce the car dealer’s sales expenses such as sales commissions in order to increase the dealer’s cash flow.

How does Dealer Holdback work?

We live on the assumption that car dealers earn a small amount every time when they sell a new car. There are a number of costs involved with selling you that car and dealers earn zero profit.


When the dealer orders a car from the factory, the finance company covers the invoice price and the dealer pays a certain amount of interest on an everyday basis for the time vehicle remains in inventory. Once the car sells dealer will pay off the loan and the car gets replaced. 

Dealers hold the invoice sale as the car will be sold at the dealer’s cost. Manufacturers initiated Dealer holdback is the percentage of the vehicle’s price

which gets returns to the dealer several times a year (usually quarterly). In order to determine the invoice price, the holdback amount is included in the price. 

What is Invoice price?

The price which appears on the invoice that the manufacturer sends to the dealer at the time when the dealer receives a car from the factory. The invoice price is also termed as the dealer cost as it includes freight, destination or delivery charges. The final price does not reflect the cost due to rebate, allowances, discounts and other offers and incentives which dealers might receive from the manufacturer.

Can Dealer holdback is negotiable?

The dealer holdback is the dealer’s own money and they are never excited about giving this amount of money to the consumers. 


While negotiating the price of your new car, dealer holdback will never be included in the process as this is the dealer’s profit and the salesman’s commission. The amount of commission is entirely based upon the gross profit and the information is possessed by the sales manager and other authorities of the company.