BERLIN — The Austrian Communist Party unexpectedly won a municipal election in the Alpine country's second biggest city Sunday, according to preliminary results.

The Communists got 28.9% of the vote in the election for the city council in the southern city of Graz, ahead of the center-right People's Party with 25.7%.

Mayor Siegfried Nagl, a People's Party member who has led the city for 18 years, announced he would step down from his post.

Communist candidate Elke Kahr didn't immediately say whether she would seek the mayoral post.