Gears (Transformers)

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Gears is the name of two fictional characters from the Transformers series.

Transformers: Generation 1[edit]

Transformers character
Voiced by (English) Don Messick
Voiced by (Japanese) Toshiro Ishii
Affiliation Autobot
Sub-group Mini-Bots
Function Transport and Reconnaissance
Rank 6
Partner Huffer, Powerglide, Bumblebee, Warpath, and Cosmos
Motto "Nobody wins a war - somebody loses."
Alternate modes 1983 Chevrolet S-10, Cobra Flight Pod

Gears is anti-social, a self-proclaimed misfit. His tech spec indicated he acted this way to cheer others up as they attempted to cheer him up.[1] However, his portrayal in the animated series indicated he tended to annoy his comrades with his constant complaining. Despite this he never shirks from battle with the Decepticons.[2]

Marvel Comics[edit]

"The only thing Gears wants to learn about this planet is how to get off it. I hate this place already. I just know you're going to use me as a mobile transport unit again, once we have to set up. Nuts, let's go home." - Gears in Marvel Transformers #1

Gears is notable in the Marvel Comics series as the Autobot who teamed up with Spider-Man in #3 of the series. The two went off to save Sparkplug Witwicky from the Decepticons, and Spider-Man's presence allowed Gears to take down Ravage and Soundwave, before confronting Megatron himself, who blew the floor out from under him. Spider-Man's web failed to catch Gears, and he plummeted to the bottom of a cliff. He was eventually repaired by Ratchet and teamed with Windcharger and Cliffjumper on the Dinobot Hunt; unfortunately he was injured again in a Decepticon ambush.

He went on to battle the Decepticons on many other occasions, becoming less prominent as time went on. He was eventually deactivated during the Underbase powered Starscream's rampage.

Gears was seen among the Autobots being repaired on the Ark when Optimus Prime sent Landmine and Cloudburst on their mission to obtain computer chips to repair fellow Autobots in issue #52, "Guess Who The Mechannibals Are Having For Dinner?"[3]

Animated series[edit]

Gears was among the original Autobot crew of the Ark which crashed on Earth. In "More Than Meets the Eye" his infrared sensors, a feature of his tech spec, allowed him to track down Ravage, although he left the actual capturing of the Decepticon to others.

Gears' most prominent appearance came in the episode "Changing Gears". Megatron stole a chip from Gears to complete his Solar Needle, a weapon that could pierce the sun itself. The removal of the chip altered Gears' personality from cranky to jovial, and he willingly assisted Megatron in completing the device. Although he knows that the Descepticon are evil but was rendered so nice that he can't say no into helping them. During the helping he wonders why he can't get mad or can't get to upset but realizes that his personality chip was stolen from him by Megatron and using it to power up the Solar Needle. when his friends arrive to stop the Decepticons which gave Gears the chance to get his circuit back to restore his real personality but was stoped by Starscream. When Megatron had Optimus Prime at gunpoint he order Gears to repair the Solar Needle which confuses the Autobots as to why he would helped them until Megatron explained that he's using Gears personality circuit for his purpose. However Prime used this to get Gears to snap out of his personality glitch by asking Gears to do him a favour - and he did, sabotaging the device. After the Decepticons were defeated, Gears was restored to his previous personality, and reverted to moaning as the other Autobots drove off without him.

Gears didn't make any more prominent appearances (he did however have a big role in episode "B.O.T"). A debate can be made that Gears was one of the two Autobots who was dropped into the pool of acid before Jazz, Bumblebee, Cliffjumper, and Spike were saved by Spike's son, Daniel. Although amongst most fans, Gears' only appearance in the film was on Moon Base 1 sitting next to Ironhide before he leaves. It is assumed he died when Unicron attacked Moon Base 1.

Audio books[edit]

Gears was featured in the 1985 Transformers audio book Autobots' Lightning Strike.

Dreamwave Productions[edit]

When civil war broke out on the planet Cybertron between the Autobot and Decepticon factions, Gears joined the Autobot cause. When Decepticon leader Megatron and Autobot leader Optimus Prime disappeared in an accident with a space bridge, the Autobot and Decepticon forces splintered into smaller factions. Gears stayed with the Autobots under the leadership of Prowl.

Learning that the Decepticons were testing a new mobile command base at the Praetorus Wharf, Prowl led Cliffjumper, Gears, Jazz, Skids and Sideswipe to investigate. What they discovered was Trypticon (Transformers: The War Within - The Dark Ages #3). They were only saved when Shockwave called the giant away to combat the Fallen.

Gears was among the Autobots who followed Optimus Prime on his mission on board the Ark and crash landed on Earth. In 1984, when the Ark's computer re-activated, it reformatted Gears as in the form of an Earth truck.

Eventually the combined forces of the Autobots on Earth, and their human allies were able to capture the Decepticons. A ship called the Ark II was built to take the Cybertronians back to Cybertron along with some human companions, but the ship exploded shortly after takeoff. The human allies were killed but the Cybertronians were lost in the ocean, again in stasis lock.

Gears returned to Cybertron with Optimus Prime and most of the Autobots to face charges after Ultra Magnus told them that the war had ended. Eventually Gears returned to Earth to help with the construction of Autobot City.

Devil's Due Publishing[edit]

In this reimagining of the Generation One story, the Ark was discovered by the terrorist Cobra Organization, and all the Transformers inside were reformatted into Cobra vehicles remotely controlled by the Tele-Vipers. In this storyline Gears turned into a Cobra flight pod.

IDW Publishing[edit]

Gears appeared in issue #1-2 of Transformers: Evolutions - Hearts of Steel.


  • Generation 1 Gears (1984)
The original Gears toy was based on the Microman toy line.[4] He was released with a normal Autobot symbol in 1984, and with an Autobot rub sign in 1985. The rub sign version of Gears was re-released in Japan in 2004. One of the earliest Transformers toys.[5]
This toy features an embossed "M" on his hood, a holdover from his Microman toy line roots.
Gears was remolded into the Autobot Swerve, and then the original mold was recolored into the Japanese exclusive named Smallfoot.
Gears was released as a toy named Pick-Up in South America and came in several color variations.
  • Generation 1 McDonald's Gears (1985)
One of the four original McDonald's Happy Meal Transformers toy from 1985, this toy was just a solid statue of the character in robot mode.

Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen[edit]

Transformers character
Affiliation Autobot
Sub-group Deluxe Vehicles, Speed Stars
Alternate modes Modified Cadillac Escalade (Deluxe), SUV (Speed Stars)

Gears is featured in the Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen toy line. His toy bio describes him as being very similar to his Generation 1 self: A complainer who always finds something negative to say about a situation.[6] His first alternate mode is a silver Cadillac Escalade, similar to a vehicle seen during the freeway brawl between Optimus Prime and Bonecrusher in the first film.[7]

His second alternate mode is a blue SUV that is a cross between a Chevrolet Suburban and a Toyota Sequoia.


  • Revenge of the Fallen Deluxe Autobot Gears (2009)
A silver redeco of the Deluxe class Stockade, from the previous movie's toy line.
  • Transformers Speed Stars Stealth Force Autobot Gears (2010)
A non-transforming blue SUV that mechanically opens its panels and reveals hidden weapons at the push of a button. Features launching missile mounted on the roof.[8] The box art shows an illustration of his robot mode, which is similar to his movie Deluxe form, but colored blue.[9]

Transformers: Prime[edit]


  • Prime Beast Hunters Deluxe Autobot Gears (not released yet)[10]
Remold of Prime Ratchet.


  1. ^ The New Yorker, Volume 61, Page 118
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ Bellomo, Mark (2010). Totally Tubular '80s. Krause Publications. pp. 112, 116. ISBN 1-4402-1282-1. 
  5. ^ Boy Toys, Lancaster New Era Lancaster, PA; August 10, 2007; by Laura Knowles
  6. ^ The Arker - Gears Archived 2009-06-06 at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ Transformers (2007) - In the scene where Optimus Prime and Bonecrusher fall off a freeway overpass, an Escalade down below hits the brakes to avoid colliding with the two combatants. The driver and her son see Optimus punch Bonecrusher, to which the son yells, "Cool, mom!" before the driver motions to protect him from further harm.
  8. ^ - Walmart Update - Official Images of Upcoming Transformers Figures
  9. ^ - Speed Stars Stealth Force Released in the Philippines
  10. ^ [1]
  • Furman, Simon (2004). Transformers: The Ultimate Guide. DK Publishing Inc. p. 62. ISBN 1-4053-0461-8. 
  • Bellemo, Mark (2007). Transformers Identification and Price Guide. Krause Publications. p. 14. ISBN 978-0-89689-445-7.