When the dealer buys a vehicle from the manufacturer it is usually financed on the dealer floor plan by the financing arm of the manufacturer (IE: GM and GMAC and GM dealer). The dealer owns that vehicle and pays interest on it until it is sold and then they pay the balance owing. Usually, there are past model incentives, which lower the cost to the dealer and they pass it on to move the unit. Eventually, they sell. I've seen some a couple of years old and brand new on the lot. Things may have changed recently, but I don't think so. Bill Malcolm
Back in the good old days(1929-1969)when my family was involved in the new car business, a car was not manufactured until it was ordered by a dealer. We had a demonstrator, usually one with most available options, and maybe two or three new ones on the lot. Customers would do a test drive then order what ever model, color, etc. they wanted. It took 4 to 6 weeks for delivery.
I remember some of the early 60's Chrysler products that were horribly ugly and seeing them on dealer lots 2 years old but technically new with less than 10 miles. These cars were being dicounted heavily. The factory helped the dealer when they carried over the first year, after that, the dealer ate the loss. I also remember 3 & 4 cars at a dealership order what you want and wait. The Japanese have Zero inventory and "just in time manufacturing". They claim, the inventories are finished goods and are either at the U.S. manufacturing site, the port of importation or the dealerships. They parade their theroies of superior manufacturing but look long enough and you will find why they are shuting plants down. Their cars are doing no better than our's right now.
We would order the car at the dealer for factory delivery. Fly to the factory, take delivery, drive to Vandalia an then drive the new car home after the Grand. Freight was not automatically charged and the savings paid for the trip.
Typically, offered at zero % interest and low pricing. When the dealer that I worked at closed on Jan 8th 2008, we still had a bunch of 06' F series and SUV's. Some even needed the rotors resurfaced because of rust build up. Ford redistributed them to the competitors.