This morning, the Local Motors website got a little bit of an update. As speculated yesterday, the automotive-centric design community is getting some software lovin’ from Siemens PLM in the form of a new software release. Solid Edge Design1. This new iteration of Solid Edge is a scaled down version of the full-blown synchronous modeling tool and with it comes a little catch.

The Catch

From the press release:
Siemens PLM Software… today announced a new offering based on its Solid Edge software that makes professional-level computer-aided design (CAD) available to the design enthusiast at an unprecedented value. Solid Edge Design1 will be introduced through Local Motors, a Siemens PLM Software partner, exclusively to the Local Motors global design community for a monthly subscription price of $19.95.

Exclusive to the Local Motors design community… at $19.95/month.

Solid Edge Design1

Solid Edge Design1 is a whittled down version of Solid Edge ST4. Here are the details of what it has and doesn’t have:

  • Includes Synchronous part model
  • Includes Translators for multiple CAD formats
  • Not compatible with commercial Edge licenses (Thanks Al)
  • No advanced surfacing
  • No adjustable component design
  • No Rendering

It’s currently only available through Local Motors for an LM member working on a community project. It’s available as a free downloadable trial till the end of the year. On January 1st, 2012, the subscription mechanism kicks in and will run members $19.95/month ($240/year). This is a client side app, not running off a cloud server or anything like that. All the licensing is handled behind the scenes with notifications for subscription renewal.

Solid Edge Design1 is being positioned as an tool for design and engineering enthusiasts. This stacks up to be potentially more lucrative for Siemens PLM… if they can prove that it works on a community platform like Local Motors and people are willing to pay the subscription. For the time they’re locked into their partnership with Local Motors. That’s unfortunate for people wanting to get their hands on a modeling tool like Solid Edge that provides a bit more functionality than other enthusiast grade 3D software like SketchUp, Shape or even Alibre Design PE, but also gives them the advantage of fine tuning it with a smaller focus group for that level of use.

Local Motors

Local Motors is a 25,000+ strong community with plans to grow the community 10x over the next five years. With the site revamp and new software offering, the members also have a way to view models online with the JT2Go Viewer through the integration of the Siemens JT Open API into the Local Motors website.

You can find out more, join the community and possibly get a version of Solid Edge Design1 at

Want more?

Check out these articles for more insight:
Develop3D – Al Dean
Scott’s Harangue – Scott Wertel


Josh is founder and editor at, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.