Sunstreaker knows to his core of his spark that he is better than any other Autobot, and he makes sure everyone else knows it, too. His sociopathic tendencies, combined with his incredible vanity and arrogance, usually result in tension between himself and the other Autobots. He is generally unwilling to help those who are having trouble keeping up, and is quite audible when it comes to complaining about the shortcomings of everyone else. The only Autobot he truly gets along with is his twin brother, Sideswipe, and even that can seem strained at times.
The main reason Optimus Prime keeps him around is most likely Sunstreaker's effectiveness in the battlefield. Ruthless and skilled in all forms of combat, there is not much Sunstreaker cannot handle. As a front-line warrior, Sunstreaker is a great asset for the Autobot army. If a rather scary one.
- Preliminary name: Spinout
- Italian name: Lince ("Lynx")
- Hungarian name: Napcsillantó/Napvillantó ("Sun-flasher")
- Portuguese name (Brazil comics): Raiado
- Portuguese name (Portugal comics): Raio Solar
- French name (Canada): Solo
Marvel Comics continuity
Prior to the outbreak of Cybertron's planet-wide civil war, Sunstreaker was a gladiator in the games held between the city-states. He was once brutally beaten by Megatron in combat, and would have been killed if Optimus Prime had not stepped in.
Early into the Autobot-Decepticon war, Sunstreaker was a member of the Magnificent Six. While they were on a mission to the Stanix region of Cybertron, he made a remarkably callous joke that convinced their allies to turn them over to the Decepticons. The entire unit was tortured for a week, and Stampede was killed. Nice.
Sunstreaker was among the crew of the Ark that crashed on Earth four million years ago and woke up in 1984. In the first few days on Earth, Sunstreaker abandoned Jazz and diverted an attack by Thundercracker and Skywarp towards a human military camp so as to keep himself from harm. He engaged the Decepticons in battle at the Witwicky garage alongside his brother, Sideswipe, but ultimately failed to keep them from kidnapping Sparkplug Witwicky. Sunstreaker was relatively low on fuel after this, and so gave up his remaining power in the transference chambers to power up Prime, Huffer, Ironhide, Bluestreak and Mirage for combat against the Decepticons.
When Shockwave took control over the Decepticons and possession of the Ark, he destroyed Sunstreaker's body as a demonstration and warning to the deposed Megatron. Because of this, Sunstreaker's body was in disrepair for a very long time, and at one point, when G.B. Blackrock asks about him in the med bay; Jazz tells him that Ratchet isn't even sure if Sunstreaker will ever be operational again.
However, Sunstreaker was fully repaired in time to view the duel between Blaster and Grimlock on the moon and get attacked by Ratbat's Decepticons. He was badly damaged again, and he wound up in stasis aboard the Ark again, to be revived by Nucleon in 1990, when he and the other newly revived Autobots joined the attack on Unicron. Surprisingly, he survived that battle as he was able to attend the first meeting of the shaky Autobot-Decepticon alliance.
An injured Sunstreaker, along with several other Autobots, was awakened not by Nucleon, but by Galvatron's Dream-Inducing Bug. Galvatron had studied their dreams in the aim of finding dissenting members of the Autobots that he hoped to put into his own employ, but after a short skirmish, Galvatron's device was placed on himself. Amusingly enough, Sunstreaker had been off-line so much while on Earth, he needed the others to explain who Galvatron was to him.
Sunstreaker and the others would go on to join the Earthforce unit, under Grimlock's command. After Skydive foolishly broadcast Prowl's location over an open channel, Jazz and Sunstreaker had to race to beat the Decepticons to the site. Prowl had just disabled an atmosphere-destroying bomb of Megatron's before it reached apex, but the poison on board was still a viable threat. They didn't beat the Decepticons to the landing site, but before they could jump into the fray, Prowl pulled Jazz and Sunstreaker aside. He had already cleared out the poison, so the two Decepticon factions were fighting over nothing! Later, Sunstreaker helped Jazz, Ironhide and Bumblebee ruin the Decepticon Enclave and any chance of peace between Megatron and Shockwave.
When Motormaster kidnapped the Autobots' ally, Irwin Spoon, Sunstreaker joined the other Autobot cars for an impromptu chase scene. He negotiated his way through the various Stunticon attacks and delaying tactics, but finally hit the wall (literally) when Motormaster detached his cab segment and left his trailer jackknifed across the highway. 'Streaker hit it head-on, and wound up with a legitimate complaint about his bodywork.
Much later, Sunstreaker was sent on a new mission to the Stanix region of Cybertron with Silverbolt, Prowl, Wheeljack, Jazz, and Inferno by Optimus Prime. While there, he overcame the ghosts of the past and helped defeat the mad Decepticon Megadeath. Of course, he was the only member of the team that didn't seem particularly haunted by those events in the first place, but the others overcame them, and wasn't that nice for them?
Another Time and Place
Sunstreaker stormed the Hydrus Four facility with his fellow Autobots to rescue Grimlock and the Dinobots. He almost took a shot in the back from a Decepticon, but Prime took out his attacker.
American cartoon continuity
Sunstreaker was part of the original crew of Autobots aboard the Ark that crashed on Earth four million years ago. When reawakened in 1984, he and his brother Sideswipe were reformatted into Lamborghini sports cars. Sideswipe and Sunstreaker often operated together.
When Chip Chase was kidnapped by the Decepticons and brought to the recently conquered antimatter laboratory of Dr. Alcazar, the Autobots successfully staged a rescue operation to get him back. Sunstreaker then led a second team of Autobots into the lab, declaring that they had to get the antimatter cubes before it was too late, smashing a Sunstreaker-shaped hole in the wall. Unfortunately, he and the other Autobots were damaged when Megatron threw an antimatter cube at them. After returning to the Ark, Sunstreaker was heard to complain about a 'very sensitive junction' in his elbow, but was soon repaired quickly enough to arm wrestle with Sideswipe. When the antimatter-fueled Decepticons attacked the Ark, Sideswipe and Sunstreaker took to the air to battle with the incoming Seeker jets, in a rambunctious — if ultimately ineffective — display of "jet judo." After the Decepticons were defeated, Sunstreaker congratulated Chip, declaring him a hero and gave him a ride on his shoulder.
After the humans of Central City were duped into believing that the Autobots were evil, Sunstreaker commented that he always knew that they would turn on the Autobots, and declared them an inferior lifeform...right as Chip, Spike, and Sparkplug Witwicky were in the control room. They probably shouldn't be too insulted, as Sunstreaker considers everyone else an inferior lifeform.
Sunstreaker was one of several Autobots who glommed onto Hoist's job as a Hollywood extra in the hopes of becoming a movie star. This mainly resulted in him wearing a ridiculous alien mask and spouting out stilted, wooden dialog.
Seriously. He's THAT good.
And he knows it.
After the Pax Cybertronia, Sunstreaker left Cybertron with four other survivors of the Great War (Sideswipe, Roulette, Shadow Striker, and Trailbreaker). One year after Cybertron was reformatted into a technorganic planet, they returned. They were greeted by many of the Maximal and Predacon inhabitants and with vast media coverage.
However, what appeared to be celebratory fireworks struck the five Autobots and also the Maximals Silverbolt and Blackarachnia. They were transported to a fiery cauldron deep within Unicron, where all but Trailbreaker were rebuilt painfully into new bodies.
Seeing an arena up ahead, the seven moved towards it, only to be attacked by a swarm of shape-shifting, lava-like creatures. Sunstreaker and the others were overwhelmed and taken into the arena (or, the Cauldron), where they were caged along with a multitude of Transformers kidnapped from across the multiverse.
The Unicron-influenced ambiance of the place was slowly driving the more violent of the group mad. This, of course, included Sunstreaker. He and Sideswipe were forced into combat in the arena (each wielding spiffy Energon weapons), but were rescued by a reborn Optimus Primal. The group, sans a corrupted Blackarachnia and Shadow Striker, fled back to Cybertron.
Japanese cartoon continuity
Before the Headmasters even arrived, Sunstreaker appeared very briefly in vehicle mode evading jet-mode Blitzwing's attacks. Sunstreaker escaped into a tunnel, and Blitzwing bounced off its exterior and crashed.
Sunstreaker is a member of the Cybertron (Autobot) Race Team, which may or may not have any other Transformers on it. He's sort of a mascot for them, and the team doesn't actually use him in races. He resents that people pay more attention to him as a promotional image than as a race car.
Sunstreaker is partnered with — for unknown reasons — the human "race queen" model Junko Shiragami, and acts as her car. Once, Sunstreaker got into a race with a human-driven sports car, much to Junko's dismay. He used his transformation ability to take a particularly sharp curve, destroying a road sign in the process, for which Junko chewed him out.
It is said that Sunstreaker drives faster when he smells Junko's marigold-scented hair. Make of that what you will.
Dreamwave comics continuity
Sunstreaker was part of Operation Liberation in 1998, a joint human-Autobot effort to defeat the Earth-bounded Decepticons. At the end it was a success, and the captured Decepticons, along with the Autobots and a human crew, departed Earth en route to Cybertron in the Ark II. The ship, however, was sabotaged and exploded upon liftoff.
A few years later Megatron and other Transformers, including Autobots, were seen causing havoc. It was discovered that Lazarus, a scientist who participated in the Ark II project, was responsible for the sabotage of the Ark II and the resurrection of several Transformers under his control via technological tampering.
General Hallo of the U.S. Military contacted Spike Witwicky to ask him if he could do something to help them reactivate Optimus Prime, whom they had recovered locked in a state of stasis. Spike managed to reactivate Optimus with a portion of the Matrix that Optimus had given him prior the ill-fated journey of the Ark II. Optimus subsequently went to the Arctic and used the Matrix to reactivate several Transformers, including Sunstreaker and his brother Sideswipe.
Sunstreaker accepted the new task at hand and fought alongside his brother when the Autobots faced the Decepticons at Lazarus' ruined base, before Hallo betrayed the Autobots by attempting to destroy both factions with a nuclear weapon.The Autobots survived when Megatron's technovirus absorbed the blast, and Sunstreaker helped his comrades recover the captive Autobots imprisoned inside the base.
As Jazz's unit worked on Megatron's virus, Sunstreaker followed Optimus Prime to San Francisco for the last battle against Megatron and his Decepticons. When Superion was taken down, Sunstreaker and Sideswipe heroically (though foolishly) charged at Devastator rather than, say, shoot him; they were surprisingly beaten up. After Optimus Prime destroyed Devastator's head, Sunstreaker was restrained by the surviving Decepticons. However, through human intervention, Optimus Prime freed his Autobots and the battle was rejoined. Sunstreaker tag-teamed with his brother to pummel Soundwave, though the Decepticons eventually escaped when Superion sacrificed his life to save the city from General Hallo's unauthorized nuclear missile launch. After Optimus Prime came back online, Sunstreaker and Trailbreaker discovered the traitorous Grimlock buried under rubble.
When Ultra Magnus arrived on Earth to enforce Shockwave's edict that the Earth-bound Autobots surrender themselves to the Cybertronian alliance, Optimus Prime ordered a portion of his troops into hiding in Portland, Oregon. This group, led by Jazz, included Sunstreaker, Sideswipe, Ratchet, Brawn, Wheeljack, and Windcharger. However, Starscream, Soundwave, and his cassettes soon escaped to Earth with Bruticus. Attacking the Ark, they defeated all of Jazz's group minus Ratchet and Brawn. Sunstreaker and the others were left in a swamp, deactivated.
A ship crewed by Minibots (led by Bumblebee) arrived on Earth with supplies, and Warpath and Bumper pulled the deactivated from their would-be swampy grave. They were promptly arrested by Commander Marissa Faireborn of the Earth Defense Command and her armored troops. The damaged were repaired.
Commander Faireborn came to Sunstreaker, Sideswipe, and Jazz with a mission. The American city of San Desto was under attack by Cybertronian creatures. Sunstreaker spent the entire mission either putting down the humans, Bumper or when they weren't around, Sideswipe. He also tore through the Insecticons like they were paper!
IDW comics continuity
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Long ago, before the war, Sunstreaker was a patron of illegal underground death matches in the Forge,where he cheered on Megatron in his first victory there. He returned several times more, including to watch Megatron's 54th battle in the arena, this time apparently alongside his brother, Sideswipe.
When Megatron, rising in power and influence, put on a recruitment call to all-comers, Sunstreaker happily answered his call. Sideswipe tried to talk him out of joining the fights, to no avail. Sunstreaker apparently thought the call was for participation in the illegal gladiatorial games, but it was actually the first recruitment call for the Decepticon army. How they took Megatron's announcement, the apparent murder of a Senator, and how they faired when Autobot security forces raided the meeting is unknown. Kaon.Neither he, nor any of the other Autobots-to-be that were present at the "rally", were seen again in prison or upon the Decepticons' escape and ravaging of
At some point during the war that followed Megatron's Decepticon rebellion, Sunstreaker was one of many Autobots trained by Kup. In the modern era, Sunstreaker was part of a detachment of Autobots that had operated covertly on Earth for at least four years, attempting to foil a Decepticon insurgency. Being stationed on Earth did little to alter Sunstreaker's arrogance, with him dismissing the three humans which Ratchet saved as "noisy creatures". Later, Sunstreaker and the other Autobots observed Megatron's brutal disciplining of the treacherous Starscream. Despite 'Streaker's high opinion of himself and his own skills, he was visibly relieved when Prowl decided to leave the Decepticons alone. After returning to the Ark-19, he complained about the humans running around loose in their headquarters.
To keep the noisy creatures occupied, he created a video game starring himself. Soon afterwards, Sunstreaker, along with Ironhide, were assigned the task of escorting the humans back to the big wild world, Tulsa, Oklahoma. On a road in the vicinity of Lebanon, Missouri, Sunstreaker and company were ambushed by the Machination. He and Hunter became separated from Ironhide and were seemingly destroyed. However, it was soon revealed that it was not the case; the debris recovered by Optimus Prime was revealed by Ratchet to be an elaborate fake.
After re-awakening in a Machination stronghold, Hunter was horrified to find an unidentified being, possibly Cybertronian, had been creating a series of Sunstreaker "clones."
Having been able to dupe the Machination into believing that he was catatonic, Hunter went exploring in their headquarters. Eventually, he discovered Sunstreaker's own decapitated head, which was still functioning. Tortured, Sunstreaker begged the human to kill him. Meanwhile, Hot Rod and Wheeljack ran afoul of the Sunstreaker clones... piloted by Headmasters — humans who could transform into the robots' heads. It turned out all of the Headmasters were mentally connected to the original Sunstreaker and leeched knowledge from him, a process that was extremely painful. However, this had its disadvantage — Sunstreaker doesn't read Autobot memos so the Machination had less inside knowledge than they thought; Hot Rod and Wheeljack escaped by using a weapon that Sunstreaker didn't know about. Hunter, rather than kill the Autobot, asked for his help to become a Headmaster himself so he could pilot one of the Machination's spare clones. After downloading the necessary information from Sunstreaker, Hunter headed to the body shop, where more clone bodies were being stored. Just as a freshly-restored Scorponok, head of the Machination, broke through a wall to kill him, Hunter was able to transform into Sunstreaker's head and linked to the real Sunstreaker's mind. Speaking as Sunstreaker, Hunter attached himself to a clone body, but commented that everything felt slow (as a result of Machination scientists cutting all connections to the real Sunstreaker, with devastating effects for the Headmasters). Hunter transformed to vehicle mode, blasted a hole in the wall and escaped.
One year later, Sunstreaker had been reunited with Sideswipe and was among the damaged Autobots under Prowl and Jazz. On the plus side, he had a shiny new body. Staying true to his sociopath roots it turned out that he had made a deal with Starscream that if the seeker delivered them Megatron, the Decepticons could have Earth, on the proviso that the Decepticons wiped out every single human being on the planet, Sunstreaker desiring them to suffer for turning him into a Headmaster. Starscream betrayed Sunstreaker however (big surprise), and as a result of this Sunstreaker is directly responsible for the Autobot defeat, Prime losing the Matrix, and the near extinction of the human race.
Feeling terrible guilt over what he had done, Sunstreaker wanted his pain to end and sacrificed his life to destroy a bridge and guard his Autobot companions from the Swarm. Unfortunately some quirk retained a hint of life which resulted in a continual colladiscopic rerun of his life and pain running through his battered head where it lay on the piles of swarm dead.
Hail and Farewell
Sunstreaker accompanied Hunter on a visit home as the Headmaster reminisced on the events in his life since meeting the Transformers.
- Sunstreaker (Autobot, 1984/1986/1990)
- Accessories: Left & right fists, 2 "Rocket Boosters", 3 rockets
- Sunstreaker was released as part of the first year of the Transformers line in the US. He transforms into a "Super Tuning" customized Lamborghini Countach LP500S with an exposed rear-mounted engine. Each robot-mode arm has a spring-launching mechanism to fire his fists or the included chrome missiles, but the springs were severely neutered in the US for safety reasons.
- In 1986, he was made available as a mail-away item (as he was no longer shipping to retail shelves), several different promotions, among them a "Digital Doom on the Highway to Destruction" flier packed with most boxed Transformers toys. He cost $8 and two robot points.
- In 1990 he was re-released in Europe as part of the "Classics" line of reissues.
- Sunstreaker is generally considered to be one of the early Generation One toys harder to find complete and unbroken. There also appears to be little chance of a reissue of the toy, as this mold has been stated by Hasbro and Takara representatives to be one of several whose original molding has been either lost or in a state of disrepair too extensive to justify the cost of re-casting.
- VS-Z Set (Multi-pack, 1985)
- Sunstreaker's only release in Japan was in the VS-Z set, along with Buzzsaw and Skids. This sounds unfair, but then one must remember Buzzsaw is an unstoppable killing machine.
- Sunstreaker (Deluxe, 2003)
- Accessories: Left & right rocket boosters, 2 flame-missiles
- A retool of the Robots in Disguise Prowl mold, Sunstreaker transforms into a Lamborghini Diablo. Unusually for non-vintage transformers at the time, he has rubber tires. In either mode, he is armed with two pressure-launch missile launchers with two flame-shaped projectiles. These launchers are mounted upon his right arm in robot mode. In vehicle mode, they can be mounted on two pegs located on his spoiler as "rocket boosters". It is notable that the part that connects the toy's windshield to the main body uses a yellow decal rather than paint, as that part is made out of unpaintable plastic. The police lights from the original mold were removed, leaving this area bare.
- Sunstreaker was the "hotel exclusive" toy from OTFCC 2003, available only to those who booked their room at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare at the convention rate, the official hotel for the convention.
- Sunstreaker meets Junko (Autobot, 2005)
- Japanese ID number: BTA-02
- Accessories: "Junko" driver/figurine, engine-block rifle
- In 2005, Takara and Hasbro released near-simultaneous and similar, but significantly different takes on Sunstreaker. The first to the market was the Binaltech Asterisk version of the toy, including with a PVC driver figurine, a girl named Junko. A redeco of the Dead End Alternator (itself a retool of Alternator Sideswipe), Sunstreaker transforms into a 1:24-scale licensed "street performance" Dodge Viper with opening doors and hood, and an open passengers' compartment. His engine block becomes a rifle for his robot mode. Like the rest of the Binaltech Asterisk line, he was packaged in robot mode instead of vehicle.
- Sunstreaker (Autobot, 2005)
- Alternator ID number: 18
- Accessories: Engine-block rifle
- A few months later, the Hasbro Alternators version was released as part of the standard Alternators line, in the redesigned "bubble" packaging (the third version of Alternators packaging). Though both are yellow redecos of the mold, the detailing between the two is very different, with the Hasbro version being a direct color-swap of the paint mask previously used for Dead End, adding red to the robot-mode parts as well as a pair of black racing stripes in car mode. Drastically put, the only two details virtually identical on both versions at first sight are the paint mask for the head and the license plate layout.
- Sunstreaker (Deluxe, 2008)
- Accessories: "Electron Pulse Blaster", engine supercharger intakes
- Sunstreaker transforms into a modified Lamborghini Gallardo. Though the car is mostly based upon the Gallardo, to avoid legal problems it also incorporates details from other cars such as the rear end of the Lamborghini Diablo. Like the original Sunstreaker's Lamborghini Countach form, the 2008 Universe vehicle mode features a customized engine supercharger intakes mounted just behind the roof of the car. Sunstreaker's license plate is tampographed "WE R 84", referring to the year the Transformers franchise was launched.
- In robot mode, while Sunstreaker's upper body is clearly a modernised version of his original body, his lower body is similar in design and transformation to Alternators Mirage. Due to design and conversion, Sunstreaker has an excellent range of articulation. The engine intakes attach onto his back in robot mode, and he is armed with his electron pulse blaster. Like many other Universe 2008 toys, Sunstreaker has a "dramatic head reveal." When his chest is rotated into place during transformation, this motion causes his head to rise into position and his ears to spring out.
- Sunstreaker shares most of his design with Universe Sideswipe, differing in headsculpt, and an altered transformation sequence. Sunstreaker is considered the original toy, as Sideswipe will not appear until a later wave of the toyline.
- An undocumented feature on Sunstreaker is that the supercharger intakes, when folded down, can be attached onto Sunstreaker's electron pulse blaster by clipping the hollow space on the underside of the intakes with the widest part of the blaster. Unfortunately, the fit is particularly tricky to secure. The gun can also be attached to the holes on either of Sunstreaker's shoulders. This feature is likely to have been designed only for Sideswipe, who originally had a shoulder-mounted weapon, as Sunstreaker's head is too wide while facing forward to accommodate it.
Henkei! Henkei! Transformers
- Sunstreaker (Deluxe, 2008)
- Japanese ID number: C-07
- Accessories: "Electron Pulse Blaster", engine supercharger intakes
- TakaraTomy's Henkei! Henkei! version of Universe Sunstreaker is a redeco of Hasbro's release, featuring a deeper shade of yellow with a much greater consistency between the painted yellow roof and the yellow plastic than seen on Universe Sunstreaker. As with all of the Henkei toys, he has vacuum-metallized silver on his Electron Pulse Blaster, his supercharger and his spoiler.
- Sunstreaker vs. Galvatron (2-pack, 2008)
- The pre-Transformers Diaclone version of Sunstreaker is the Lamborghini Countach LP500S "Super Tuning" toy. The Diaclone version was originally painted only in red or police deco; this is one of several items that have led to the fan speculation that Sunstreaker and Sideswipe's coloration and bio text were swapped around before their final release (another being that, in his bio, Sunstreaker feels that Sideswipe's car-mode lines are ruined by his rear-mounted engine, when in fact Sunstreaker is the one with said engine.) This would also explain Sunstreaker's inexplicable red shoulders/car panel decals, which were originally used to cover up the black plastic on the red Diaclone version. The statistics, however, are correct.
- In the Transformers series bible entry for his brother Sideswipe, Sunstreaker is referred to by a different name, Spinout . "Nearly the equal of his twin brother, Spinout, in combat, but less cold-blooded." The same name (spelled "Spin-Out") is also used in a Marvel Age article from 1984 that announced the Marvel comic series.
- Alternators Sunstreaker was originally planned as the first retool of the Side Swipe Dodge Viper toy. Early prototypes that were leaked to the public sported a sculpted Autobot logo, and development concept art and color maps detailed in the Transformers: Binaltech & TF Collection Complete Guide show a black-decoed figure, labelled as "Blackstreaker". This suggests he was still intended to be Sunstreaker but, like Tracks, Meister and Prowl, sporting the manufacturer's preferred coloring. A listing for "Blackstreaker" even appeared for a short time in the Wal-Mart computers. For reasons unknown, however, the toy was ultimately released as the Decepticon Dead End instead, possibly to satisfy fan demands for Decepticons in the line, but this is mere supposition. It took a couple of years until Sunstreaker would see shelves as originally intended.