Transforming into an exceptionally fast and powerful armored truck, Payload is the one the Decepticons rely on to procure the money and energy they need to function on Earth. Whatever they need, whereever they need it, in their quest for the All Spark it's Payload's job to get it to them, even if he has to smash right through Autobot lines to do it. Payload units are like Decepticon Heavy Troopers.
Both the Autobot and Decepticon armies make use of drones based on his design, which are heavily-armored, brutal melee fighters.
Sometimes there are lots of him.
On both sides.
Payload was one of the Decepticons who took part in the Battle of Tyger Pax. He was also with Swindle during the interrogation of the surviving Autobot defenders. Later, Payload was part of the crew of Starscream's ship that pursued the All Spark and Megatron to the Eshems Nebula. They were forced to turn back for repairs when the ship was damaged by an Autobot concussion chain.
Battle For the Allspark online game
Payload units of both sides have a strong defense, good attack, but poor speed. They are differentiated by little more than the make of their noggins; Autobot versions use a facemask-with-optics model, while Decepticons have a circular lens-face.
Transformers: The Game (console)
Payloads show up in Mission City to put the hurt on both Autobot and Decepticon alike. Their primary attack is an unstoppable running charge that can send even the likes of Optimus Prime and Megatron reeling. The only way to break them out of this attack is to nail them with a thrown object or melee attack when they briefly pause between charges.
Payloads also appear in the bonus Cybertron levels on both sides.
Aside from the aforementioned head differences, Decepticon Payloads are dark blue, while the Autobot versions are silver-white.
Payload's body frame has been shown in numerous forms: his Armored Truck mode, the Peace Van, the Moving Truck, the School Bus, the Ice Cream Truck, the Death Truck, the Funky Bus, the SWAT Van & the Prison Bus. Certain forms have either the Autobot head or the Decepticon head, but which game is unimportant; the same vehicle has the same head in both games.
In a timeline where the Decepticons won, Payload units are used in the occupation of Earth. They have no personality or higher consciousness, their dialogue being things like "Classification: Autobot. Identifying...".
Ironhide smashes them real good.
Transformers (2010) bio
Payload has one job, and he does it no matter who gets in his way. He delivers whatever the Decepticons need, wherever they need it. His armor easily deflects laser fire, and his powerful frame smashes through any obstacle. He doesn't like Ratchet.
The Veiled Threat
He appeared in Africa with Macerator, Starscream and Dropkick. Payload tried to destroy the Kariba Dam, but Captain Lennox and Sergeant Epps opened the emergency floodgates, and he was swept downriver. The group plans to then go and finish off the injured Payload, but it is unknown if they did or not.
- Payload (Deluxe, 2007)
- Japanese ID number: MD-17
- Payload transforms into a Bulldog II Armored Truck model based on the Decepticon-drone coloration and face type. In robot mode, his midsection has a large push-out grabber-claw that extends waaaaaaaaaaaaay far out. However, in order to do this, the claw-shaft sticks far out of his back in robot mode, making posing and display in narrow spaces difficult. It also makes him hard to balance.
- Several pieces on Payload tend to pop off easily: his brush guard, midriff-plate/claw-center, and even his upper shoulder/head assembly. The mold was later retooled to include larger pegs for the shoulder/head assembly and an added tab on the brushguard, to connect to the new slot in the claw plunger. While this was intended to give the pieces a better fit, it actually puts more pressure on the parts and causes them to pop off even easier. The chest piece, however, fits fairly well on either version but is still easy to remove.
- Payload's toy is very different from his video game version. Also, Payload has a tendency to sit on shelves for weeks, with some examples of end displays filled completely with Payload figures.
- Payload (Voyager, 2010)
- Payload is a repaint of 'Revenge of the Fallen Long Haul.
- Payload (3D Battle Card, 2007)
- In the Transformers 3D Battle Card Game, the Payload is on the Decepticon side. Pieces punched out from two different cards can be assembled to form a SWAT truck or a robot, while a third double-sided card gives its stats and attacks for each mode. He uses the same piece layout as Ratchet, though his lens-head peeking up over the back end of his vehicle mode looks less doofy than Ratchet's does. His card art was done by Lucio Parrillo.
- Payload's drones are apparently known as "Class Beta drone units". 
- The company name on Payload's toy, "Armored Security Services", spells out "ASS". This may have been intentional.
- In Veiled Threat, Payload transformed into an anti-aircraft tank.
- It is possible Payload made his movie Debut in Transformers: Dark of the Moon as the Superfund truck transporting Sentinel's Bridge Pillars.