What was your first question? are you asking if there is a metal timing CHAIN or a rubber belt? I'm not to clear on your question. But if thats what your asking it is a metal timing chain.
as to your other question you do not HAVE to run premium but it is highly recommended, when I run low or mid grade fuel my car has bad throttle responce and gets like 3 or 4 less MPG so your really not saving any money.
Yep..........Three timing chains, one for each head/cam set, driven by a main chain from the crank to an intermediate sprocket. All hydraulically tensioned. Open the oil fill cap and look down in there with a good flashlight.
The manual recommends and the engine controls are set up for 87 octane gas. You can pretty much run anything you want EXCEPT E85. The jury is still out on the present Corn Belt lobbying efforts to change the oxygenate level to E15.