Given his bright red-and-blue color scheme, it's perhaps no surprise that Gears often makes me think of Superman. This image from issue #3 of Marvel's 1980's Transformers comic (his only significant appearance in that series) of Gears ascending alongside Spider-Man probably helps support such an idea.
Too bad Gears is such a grouch.
To be fair, his original Tech Specs bio suggests that at least some of this grumpiness is an act, as he hopes to boost his comrades' spirits (presumably in need of it due to their exile on Earth and the ongoing war with the Decepticons) as they try to boost his. They also say that he can be airborne (he doesn't really fly, per se, but he can shoot into the air like a rocket, controlling his decent through compressed air beneath his feet) up to 20 miles, which is well into the stratosphere. Actually, that's also in keeping with the Superman motif, especially when you consider that the original version of the world's most famous superhero couldn't really fly, either, but was limited to a literal (rather than figurative) ability to "leap tall buildings in a single bound."
Oddly enough, despite nearly all of the original cast of Transformers characters having received official updates in recent years, this toy from 1984 remains the only one (not counting reissues) for the original Generation One character to date.* The character of Swerve, whose original 1986 toy was a remold of Gears, is getting the latest of what has been a string of updates, reportedly due in stores next month, but there's still been no word yet that a new Gears will be made, although the possibility of a remold/redeco of that upcoming Swerve toy is perhaps the best chance for a new version of Gears we've had in ages.
Sounds like something else for Gears to complain about.
*The name Gears has been used on a toy related to the Revenge of the Fallen line in 2009, but that's not only not the same character, but the toy really bears pretty much no resemblance whatsoever, so it's hard to even call it an homage, despite obvious conscious attempts to use blue and red in places.