What is the difference between AutoCAD and SolidWorks?
What is the difference between AutoCAD and SolidWorks?
The company Autodesk created the computer-aided design programme AutoCAD (hence the name AutoCAD). It makes it easier and faster than drawing by hand to create digital 2D and 3D designs. The data can also be quickly saved and kept on the cloud, allowing for anytime, anywhere access.

What is the difference between AutoCAD and SolidWorks?


Most engineering universities now teach AutoCAD as part of their curricula. As a result, even if you are a beginner, AutoCAD knowledge is expected of you. As you were leaving for your first job, someone said, "Do you know SolidWorks?" Do you have any questions about SolidWorks? As a result, we will describe the differences between Autocad and Solidworks in this article. AutoCAD vs. Solidworks


An engineer who isn't conversant with AutoCAD is quite rare. Actually, the first CAD software to run on a personal computer was AutoCAD. The initial piece of software contributed to a shift in the CAD industry. People were apprehensive to stop using manual, conventional drawing methods when AutoCAD started to gain popularity.


When individuals started moving away from traditional 2D over time, SolidWorks was born. One of the most popular 3D CAD programmes today, SolidWorks is extremely useful for mechanical engineers. It's safe to say that you won't find a single mechanical engineer nowadays who hasn't utilised SolidWorks.

 The Origins Of AutoCAD:

Many of us might be unaware that the idea for AutoCAD was first conceived by the company Interact CAD. Autodesk bought Interact CAD in 1980, and the first version of AutoCAD was made available in 1982.


AutoCAD was the first CAD programme that users could set up on their personal computers rather than on microcomputers. AutoCAD quickly gains popularity and is accepted by the majority of industries after only a few months of use. Designers are no longer required to employ hand-drawn sketches due to AutoCAD's reduction in the drawing cycle time.

Solidworks vs. AutoCAD


Despite multiple updates and feature additions over the years, AutoCAD is still thought of as 2D CAD software. Autodesk is conscious of this and continuously improves its products.


Features of AutoCAD:

  • AutoCAD is primarily a 2D CAD tool, even though AutoDesk has added 3D CAD capabilities throughout the years. I can vouch for the fact that AutoCAD was never able to corner the 3D CAD industry.

  • This is because 3D CAD was never treated seriously by AutoCAD. Since creating a 3D model in AutoCAD is much trickier than in any other 3D CAD tool, people choose to utilise it as 2D CAD software.

  • Businesses couldn't stop using AutoCad even if 2D CAD software was no longer in demand.

  • a.dxf files, which are supported by the majority of CNC machines, can only be produced by AutoCAD. Despite the fact that several programmes today can produce.dxf files, only AutoCAD makes editing them comparatively easy.

AutoCAD's capabilities:

  • AutoCAD, which is mainly a 2D CAD tool, now incorporates 3D CAD capabilities thanks to AutoDesk. I can vouch for the fact that AutoCAD has never had a successful monopoly on the 3D CAD market.

  • This is the reason: AutoCAD never treated 3D CAD seriously. Since building a 3D model in AutoCAD is substantially more challenging than in any other 3D CAD programme, it is utilised more frequently as a 2D CAD programme.

  • Even though 2D CAD software is no longer in demand, many organisations still utilise AutoCad. The majority of CNC machines can read.dxf files as input, and only AutoCAD can create them. Many contemporary products can still produce.dxf files, but only AutoCAD produces them.

  • In the electrical and electronic sectors, AutoCAD is used to design electrical routings and logic board diagrams.

  • Because it is so easy to use, the map and GIS businesses continue to utilise it.

  • Simple mechanical engineering drawings can be completed relatively easily with AutoCAD.

  • I can conclude by saying that every technical industry today uses AutoCAD or has in the past. The majority of CAD software has been developed since it became the industry standard.

SolidWorks :

Although Dassault Systemes produces SolidWorks, did you know that Dassault did not invent the first iteration of SolidWorks? In 1993, MIT alumnus Jon Hirschtick and a few buddies founded SolidWorks. SolidWorks was released for the first time in 1995.


SolidWorks quickly gained popularity. It only altered the process of 3D modelling. In 1995, 3D CAD software was not user-friendly. SolidWorks was the first piece of feature-rich and user-friendly software. SolidWorks was simply adored by the people when it first came out.


Despite already having Catia in their portfolio of products, Dassault Systems bought SolidWorks in 1997. However, Catia was serving a different market at the time. The merger with Dassault proved advantageous.


Solidworks vs. AutoCAD

SolidWorks is the source

Throughout the year, SolidWorks received multiple updates that improved the program's features. SolidWorks is one of the most widely used programmes in the United States, across all industries.

Strengths of SolidWorks

SolidWorks has so many features that it would take multiple pages to cover them all. Here, I'll only go over a few of SolidWorks' most crucial features that companies utilise frequently.

Modelling in 3D CAD:

SolidWorks is the best 3D CAD modelling programme, to put it simply. There are many modelling options, including basic 3D modelling, surface modelling, free form modelling, etc. Additionally, it has the ability to construct sheet metal models and wire harnesses.

Drafting in 2D CAD:

In contrast to AutoCAD, which can be used for anything, SolidWorks' 2D CAD drafting is mostly utilised for components and assemblies. In SolidWorks, all 2D drafting is parametric, which means that any changes you make to the associated 3D model update the drawing as well.


Using SolidWorks, it is easy to create a mechanism, an animation, and a simulation. These features let businesses validate the design before going into production.

Analysis Using Finite Elements:

SolidWorks is a 2D and 3D CAD application. Understanding a physical component's probable behaviour under various loading conditions is useful. The use of thermal analysis is also advantageous, which is good.

CAM ( Computer Aided Manufacturing):

SolidWorks incorporates the capability to integrate with machines that use computer-aided machining. One of the best CAM programmes is SolidWorks.

Electrical Engineering:

This programme is among the best for creating wire harnesses or electrical systems. It has the ability to design schematics and create 3D harnesses.


PDM ( Product Data Management):

For commercial operations, a solution for product life cycle record-keeping is essential. It helps with coordination in situations where there are many users.


Benefits of SolidWorks, the top 3D CAD programme:

  • A straightforward user interface

  • Straightforward instructions

  • A simple learning curve

  • The most straightforward CAD application to use

  • CAD parametric modelling

  • Authentic 2D drafting

  • Model made of metal sheets

  • Advanced assembly module

  • Analysis Finite Element Analysis

  • The capacity to model and use mechanisms

  • There are tools for handling product data.

SolidWorks' drawbacks:

Other than the fact that 2D CAD drawing is inferior than AutoCAD, there are no drawbacks..

Which Sectors Utilise SolidWorks?

Sincerely, SolidWorks is utilised by virtually every sector. A very useful piece of software is SolidWorks. SolidWorks is used by practically every mechanical enterprise. However, SolidWorks is most widely used in the heavy industrial, automobile, aerospace, home appliance, and medical device industries.



  • At this point, it should be clear how significantly AutoCAD and Solidworks differ from one another. Comparing them would not provide a clear image since they both serve the same market. the leading companies in both software sectors. Which field you fit into now is up to you.

  • Although SolidWorks is required for mechanical engineering, AutoCAD is the programme to master if you're interested in civil or architectural engineering.