Ultravox hit Vienna was hailed as an honorary chart-topper after being named the nation's favourite number two single.
The single triumphed in a national poll by Radio 2 and the Official Charts Company to find the greatest track to narrowly miss out on the top slot.
Vienna, with its moody, dry ice-filled black-and-white promo, was held off number one by novelty track Shaddup You Face by US-born Australian Joe Dolce.
It will feature in a countdown of the best number twos of all time broadcast from 2pm, featuring the top 40 songs which were a whisker away from the top in their own right.
The Ultravox song's triumph left The Pogues and Kirsty MacColl single Fairytale Of New York as the all-time number two number two. The 1987 Christmas hit was originally held in check by the Pet Shop Boys cover of Elvis Presley's hit Always On My Mind.
The poll was launched to celebrate 60 years of the singles chart. DJ Tony Blackburn will list the songs in his three-hour show The Nation's Favourite Number Two Single.
He was among a panel of experts - including Radio 2's Ken Bruce and Janice Long, Radio 1's Annie Nightingale, Official Charts Company managing director Martin Talbot and 6 Music's Steve Lamacq - who compiled a shortlist from 941 singles which have made it to number two. Radio 2 listeners then voted.
Ultravox frontman Midge Ure said: "We are extremely pleased and very humbled to have been given this honorary number one, especially knowing the outstanding records which were also in the running - Strawberry Fields, Hound Dog and Wonderwall to name just a few.
"A huge thanks to everyone who took the time and effort to vote for Vienna. It has restored our faith in the idea that the public will always recognise the good in music, and that this song has proved this."
Radio 2's head of music Jeff Smith said: "Vienna is a brilliant track; a true classic. It was up against hits by some of the world's biggest acts - We Are The Champions by Queen, Rocket Man by Elton John and Rolling In The Deep by Adele. The countdown is packed with some amazing songs."
Mr Talbot said: "Ultravox's Vienna has beaten off some truly great, classic tracks to claim the title of the UK public's favourite number two single - including Fairytale Of New York, Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields, My Generation, Waterloo Sunset and many more.
"It is also probably the most apt winner, given the fact that it was kept from the chart summit in 1981 by Joe Dolce's Shaddup You Face, which has long been considered one of the biggest chart injustices of all time.
He added: "To mark the 60th anniversary of the Official Singles Chart in 2012, we are delighted to declare it as an honorary official number one single."
The Who's My Generation was 12th in the list, Wonderwall by Oasis finished at 13, Rolling In The Deep was at 34 and Rocket Man was at 37.
The top 10 is as follows: (with the song that held it off in brackets)Suggest a correction
1. Ultravox - Vienna, 1981 (Shaddup You Face - Joe Dolce)
2. The Pogues feat. Kirsty MacColl - Fairytale Of New York, 1987 (Always On My Mind - Pet Shop Boys)
3. Don McLean - American Pie, 1972 (Son Of My Father - Chicory Tip, Without You - Nilsson)
4. James - Sit Down, 1991 (The One And Only - Chesney Hawkes)
5. The Stranglers - Golden Brown, 1982 (Town Called Malice - The Jam)
6. The Kinks - Waterloo Sunset, 1967 (Silence Is Golden, The Tremeloes)
7. The Beatles - Penny Lane/Strawberry Fields Forever, 1967 (Release Me, Engelbert Humperdinck)
8. Queen - We Are The Champions, 1977 (The Name Of The Game - Abba, Mull Of Kintyre/Girls' School - Wings)
9. The Beach Boys - God Only Knows, 1966 (Yellow Submarine/Eleanor Rigby - The Beatles)
10. A-ha - Take On Me, 1985 (The Power Of Love, Jennifer Rush)