"Dealer Cash" is an incentive paid to a dealer by a manufacturer for selling a certain model. The incentive is meant to encourage dealers to offer that model at a lower price, thus stimulating sales. This money is typically paid to the dealer when the dealer purchases the designated model from the manufacturer, when the dealer sells a vehicle of that model, or when the dealer achieves a specified overall sales volume for that model.
Edmunds no longer publishes Dealer Cash on our Incentives and Rebates page but we still recommend researching the TMV price as this will reflect the average price people are paying and includes the pass-through rate for Dealer Cash. You can also use our Forums as a resource to see what others have paid and the deals they have gotten on their new car purchases.
Please note that individual dealers have the option to pass on all, a portion or none of this incentive to consumers. The pass-through rates for Dealer Cash are reflected in our True Market Value (TMV) pricing, so the TMV price should continue to be your target when negotiating a purchase, even when the model is supported by Dealer Cash. In these cases, you may find that the TMV base price for the vehicle is actually lower than the invoice price.
To learn more about Dealer Cash and Dealer Holdback, feel free to read the following articles: