Austria Votes: Right Makes Large Gains
Update: the Social Democrats seem to have secured the most votes overall, but far-right parties made big gains.
Preliminary official results from Sunday's poll show Social Democrats with 29.7% of the vote.
But the country's two far right parties made large gains, winning a total vote share of 29% between them.
The conservative People's Party, which was in a faltering coalition with the Social Democrats, won 25.6%.
Following the collapse of its coalition government, Austria heads to the polls amid expectations of big gains by the far-right Freedom Party.
The elections were called after a coalition between the Social Democrats and the conservative People's Party fell apart after just 18 months.
Polls hint that has opened the door for the Freedom Party and the Alliance for the Future of Austria to gain strength.
Voters appear disenchanted with the centre left and centre right.
The new law lowering the voting age from 18 to 16 was passed last year by Austria's grand coalition government of conservatives and Social Democrats. It was expected to be used for the first time in polls scheduled for 2010, but the governing coalition was consumed by infighting and collapsed in July. And 200,000 new Austrian voters aged 16 and 17, now have a chance to vote on Sunday.