I agree. The first thing to go is the chain guide and/or the chain tensioner. Sometimes a bad tensioner will cause the chain to slap around. As long as proper maintenance and good oil have been used on the car, don't worry about the chain.
I bought my wife a '90 190E 2.6 w/160k on the clock. Changed the top timing cover seal and the little bottom one, plugs, and valve cover. No chain slapping or funny noises. The car runs great. Good power and pep. I'm planning on adding an air filter intake modification similar to 2Phast.com. My only regret is that I wish it was a stick. They are not that easy to find. But all around, the car is GREAT !!
99 C230K Sport