The blue Austin A35 was the first car Owen Lokuciejewski-Taylor, 25, bought when he was 17. He put about $2,500 into "Bessie" through the years, the Daily Mail reported.
The Austin A35 model was sold from 1956 to 1968.
“The last few days have just been a bit sad. I'm heartbroken, if I'm honest,” Lokuciejewski-Taylor told the Mail.
Thieves took off in the car around 6:30 a.m. Nov. 4, taking it from Lokuciejewski-Taylor's driveway, West Yorkshire police told the Mail.
Police recovered the car, and by 9:30 a.m., Lokuciejewski-Taylor was standing over its smoldering remains, the Mail reported.
Police are searching for the suspects.
Lokuciejewski-Taylor is upbeat.
"As so many people have said, 'You can't let idiots like those lads ruin your day,' so I look to the future and possibly to the next little Austin," he told the Mail.