Sigh, I'll try and tackle this one misinformed point at a time:
Excuse me - it's not misinformed, I've ridden one over a few days and quite a few miles. In return for using it I stripped it down and fixed a puncture and greased everything, adjusted the hubs etc etc. I also did quite a lot of research on folding bikes as I am very close to buying one.
No, the 'cheapest' Brompton is £700, that is a single speed with no mudguards or rack, however, for that amount of money you get 4 choices of bar, 4 choices of colour (64 combinations), a choice of normal or extended seat post, a bike built in England and the smallest folded bike available to buy. And before anyone says 'why would you buy a single speed folding bike?', Kansai have just released one, as have Dahon in the past. (Incidentally, list price on a 3 speed Kansi is £725, it comes in one colour, and with one bar type, and does not include a rack or mudguards.)
A single speed Dahon is £350, you can easily get spares, it's lighter, has better brakes too.
The handlebars do not slip easily, or rather, that is the first time I have ever heard that accusation.
I'm surprised at that, lots of leverage and only 1 bolt!
A proper road caliper would mean you would not be able to route the cable from the bottom, hence metres of spare cable outer lolling around and getting in the way, they come as standard with 2 piece brake pads that take a slot in replacement pad too.
But they aren't very powerful, no matter what the excuse is for using them! They were very worrying on wet Sheffield hills...
The grips are not to everyones liking, I would probably spend a whopping £7 and put some ODI Attacks on there, some people do like them though, just like they like the grips on a million other bikes similarly priced that are regarded as inferior.
No sorry, the grips are AWFUL. £100 BSO's have better grips. And if a £700 bike hasn't got a basic quality set of grips it's a bit of a poor show.
Cranks are square taper, like what we all ride? Pedals are OK, one of them folds, which is very clever, have you seen the pedals that come with a £5k Trek Madone? The Brompton ones are better.
Not a fair comparison - the Trek, like all road bikes, has very basic pedals as people like to choose their own clipless pedals. The Brompton ones are very slippy when wet.