Article by Rod Mackay updated September 19, 2016


SOLIDWORKS 2017 is packed with new, customer-focused enhancements. Whether you design single components, incredibly complex equipment, or even entire facilities, SOLIDWORKS 2017 delivers easy-to-use tools to help turn your ideas into higher-quality products. Check out the SOLIDWORKS 2017 Top Ten list of features to look out for in the new release:

1. SOLIDWORKS 3D Interconnect

Work seamlessly with anyone, and incorporate design changes dramatically faster.

  • Open proprietary 3D CAD data directly into SOLIDWORKS
  • Includes Creo®, CATIA® V5, SolidEdge®, NX™, and Inventor®
  • Retain associativity to the original file

Register for our SOLIDWORKS Interconnect Webinar to see the new features LIVE

2. Improved Large Assembly Performance

Speed design of large assemblies and layouts machinery and equipment.

  • New Asset Publisher, Ground Mates and Magnetic Mates speed equipment layouts
  • Replace sub-assembly with multi-body part and maintain downstream references;
  • Replace missing references all at once

Register for our Large Assembly webinar to see the new features LIVE

3. More powerful modeling tools

Faster, easier modeling with fewer picks and clicks.

  • New Advanced Hole Wizard creates/reuses customized holes
  • Wrap Feature now for any surface; Offset 3D Curve on surface with multiple faces
  • Sheet Metal support for three-bend corners

4. Renderings and Animations get a boost from Visualize

Dramatic improvement in rendering speed and improved workflow between modeling, rendering, and viewing.

  • New “Visualize Boost”: Network rendering made simple for blazing fast render speeds
  • Import animations and motion studies
  • Map SOLIDWORKS camera navigation and hot keys
  • Support for HTC® Vive™, Oculus, Google® Cardboard, Samsung®

Register for our What’s New in SOLIDWORKS 2017 Communication Tools webinar to see Visualize LIVE

5. Faster 2D Drawing Creation

Simplified, faster drawing creation.

  • Reference and link to BOM table cell elements in annotations
  • Parametrically mirror drawing views without the model
  • Pre-defined layers

6. Expanded capabilities for Model Based Definition

Ease the transition from 2D drawings to MBD and enable model-based enterprises (MBE).

  • Compare geometry and 3D PMI between two revisions
  • Define DimXpert 3D PMI more easily for drafted parts
  • Export STEP 242 with 3D PMI to automate CAM and CMM
  • Attach multiple files to 3D PDF to build Technical Data Packages (TDP)

Attend our What’s new with SOLIDWORKS MBD 2017 webinar to see the product LIVE

7. Electrifying Electrical/Electronic Design

Expanded capabilities mean improved productivity for electrical design.

  • SOLIDWORKS Electrical:
    • Automatic creation of schematic from a spreadsheet
    • Compound parts – accessories
  • SOLIDWORKS PCB: Unified design environment between schematic editing, board layout and 3D layout

Attend our What’s New in SOLIDWORKS PCB 2017 webinar to see PCB software LIVE

8. Simplifying Design Validation

Simulation expanded to handle more use cases – extended capabilities tackle more design scenarios.

  • SOLIDWORKS Simulation: Display simulation results in SOLIDWORKS model; arc length control for nonlinear contact
  • SOLIDWORKS Plastics: Part Mass can be used in addition to gate temperature for gate freeze and pressure holding time determination
  • SOLIDWORKS Flow: Parametric Study now allows multi-parameter optimization

Attend our What’s New in SOLIDWORKS Simulation 2017 webinar to see the products LIVE

9. Integrating design and manufacturing

Extending SOLIDWORKS capabilities for the manufacturing ecosystem.

  • 3D Printing: Import/Export 3MF. Import mesh data
  • SOLIDWORKS Inspection: Manual and selective ballooning
  • SOLIDWORKS Costing: Instant estimates from manufacturers via My.SolidWorks Manufacturing Network

Register for our SOLIDWORKS 2017 for 3D Printing webinar to learn more

10. Improving data management and collaboration

Collaborate at more levels and manage data more efficiently.

    • Version overwrite;
    • Rollback with references;
    • Improved viewing
  • SOLIDWORKS PDM Professional: Vault Database Replication
  • eDrawings®:
    • Augmented Reality (AR) for the Android™;
    • 3D Views and annotation views for assemblies;
    • Component descriptions;
    • Weld beads;
    • Undo/redo

Register for our SOLIDWORKS PDM 2017 webinar to learn more about data management

SOLIDWORKS 2017 Resources

Access our resources page to get everything you need to learn what’s new in SOLIDWORKS 2017, including tech tips, demonstrations, and upcoming product webinars. You can also download a copy of the SOLIDWORKS 2017 Top Ten features.


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Rod Mackay

Rod has been using 3D CAD software for over 25 years and has trained thousands of designers to use their CAD systems more effectively. Rod is the Javelin Webmaster and is based in Ottawa, ON., Canada.